Second Public Draw for the Distribution of Lots to Former Employees of Petrotrin
The Honourable Camille Robinson-Regis, MP
Minister of Housing and Urban Development
Large Conference Room
Ministry of Housing and Urban Development
Tuesday, August 16, 2022
Good morning everyone. Thank you for being here.
Let me start by acknowledging the important people joining us here this morning for today’s event:
- Mrs. Claire Davidson-Williams, Permanent Secretary (Ag.) Ministry of Housing and Urban Development
- Ms. Nirmala Ramlogan, Deputy Permanent Secretary (Ag.), Ministry of Housing and Urban Development
- Mr. Wayne Innis, Chairman of the Land Settlement Agency
- Mr. Hazar Hosein, CEO, and other staff of the LSA
- Mr. Nicholas Hunte, Senior Manager, PETROTRIN
- Ms. Tarisse Austin, International and Policy Liason Officer, Ministry of Energy and Energy Industries.
- Former employees of Petrotrin viewing online
- Members of the media
- Ladies and gentlemen
Today, we are once again fulfilling a promise this Government made to former employees at the Petroleum Company of Trinidad and Tobago (Petrotrin) when the company was restructured four years ago.
In December 2018, our Honourable Prime Minister announced in Parliament that the Government would provide land for former employees of Petrotrin and in March 2020, Cabinet approved the Policy Framework for the Distribution of Residential Lots and/or Agricultural Plots to former employees who received termination benefits, resulting from the closure of the PETROTRIN refinery, and restructuring of exploration and production in 2018.
Of the 2,816 applications from former employees of Petrotrin for residential lots, 1,493 persons indicated that they did not already own land. As a consequence, on September 7, 2021, at a transparent event similar to this one, the Land Settlement Agency conducted a live draw where the names of 70 of those applicants were drawn for residential lot allocation. After our due diligence, I am pleased to report that 38 of those persons moved on to the next stage, and selected their lots at a ceremony on May 10, 2022.
Less than three months later, we are here again, to select another 21 beneficiaries for 21 residential lots, located between La Savanne and Nurse Trace, Guayaguayare. These lots were developed to a ready-tobuild state, at a cost of approximately $166,000 per lot.
As you are no doubt aware, it takes time and money to develop land and so everyone can be allocated lots at the same time. We are currently at varying stages of the development of lots at La Romain II, Woodford Lodge II, Chaguanas; La Phillipine II, Gran Couva; Ponderosa, Golconda; Glenroy II, Princes Town; and Guapo, Point Fortin.
Cabinet also approved the sourcing of residential lots from:
- The Trinidad and Tobago Housing Development Corporation
- Lots from within Greenfield or new developments;
- The Estate Management and Business Development Company Limited (EMBDC)
- Surplus lots from twenty-two (22) estates leased to Caroni
(1975) Limited are to be made available to the general public;
- Lands vested in Heritage Petroleum Company Limited
- PSAEL lands which are the land assets managed or owned by the PSAEL.
In effect, therefore, this draw today is a priority listing. The eligible applicants who are not chosen today will simply go back into the pool for the next draw. As you are aware, to be eligible, former employees of Petrotrin must have received termination notices, and of course, must not already have any land registered in their names.
As a fair and transparent Government, we have adhered to the Cabinet decision approving the distribution of these lots. For continued transparency, the names of the 21 applicants selected today to receive from lots from the second draw, will be published in the press in the coming days.
The results of the random live draw for the distribution of lots are subject to verification. They will therefore be reconciled against the Land Registry at the office of the Registrar General and other databases such as those of the HDC and the LSA.
The public is encouraged to submit any information about land ownership of selected applicants, queries or concerns to the LSA via email at email@example.com. Applications by persons who are discovered to be owners of land will be disqualified automatically. Eligible selected persons can expect to be contacted within six weeks after publication of the official public advertisement of the draw results, in order to continue with the process.
In closing, therefore, I thank you all again for being here and for viewing. Thank you to the Management and Staff of the LSA and from the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development for the tremendous work for this event.
I think, Ladies and Gentlemen, this is a fitting way to celebrate the 60th
Anniversary of our country’s Independence!
Thank you, and may God continue to bless our nation.