Shanty town committee report complete

Senator Dion Foulkes, Minister of Labour.

Findings made public next week


Labour Minister Dion Foulkes said Tuesday that while the government’s survey of the 11 illegal shanty towns in New Providence is complete, the results will not be released to the public until next week.

In an interview with reporters outside of Cabinet yesterday, Foulkes said, the team canvassed the capital for three consecutive weekends and the information has been passed on to the Department of Statistics (DOS).

The DOS, he said, is in the process of compiling a report that will be made public next Wednesday.

“Our next step is to hold public meetings, especially in the Carmichael Road area,” Foulkes said.

“And we intend to have two townhall meetings – one in the shanty town and another one for the subdivisions around the shanty towns.  So, we (will) tell everyone what our time table is (and) what the notice is for the residents.

The minister said that there will also be a meeting with the lease holders of the lands that the shanty towns occupy. The owners, according to the minister, are all Bahamian.

“We intend to begin surveying Abaco – the fairly large areas the Mudd and the Pigeon Pea. That will start the middle of May.”

Foulkes said the government has not yet started issuing notices of eviction to persons living in these illegal communities.

“That will be done by the Attorney Generals Office and the Ministry of Works,” he said.

“There are certain time periods that have to be given. Those notices will be given by those two authorities.”

There are 11 shanty towns in New Providence – eight in the southwest and the remaining three in the eastern district, according to officials.

Four others also exist in Grand Bahama, along with several shanty towns in North Eleuthera, North Andros and Abaco.