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Thirty three persons were presented with Certificates of Title under the Land Settlement Programme, at an official handing-over ceremony held on November 1, at the Spaldings United Church in Clarendon.
The recipients are from the parishes of Clarendon and St. Elizabeth, and are part of a scheme managed by the Estate Management Division of the National Land Agency, which sells land under special terms and conditions to persons in the society, who otherwise, would have been landless.
Guest Speaker at the ceremony, State Minister in the Ministry of Agriculture and Lands, Errol Ennis, said he was delighted to hand over the titles. “More often than not, the poor’s wealth doesn’t have the certification to make it into the formal system, where they can access loans, benefits and grants, so this process is a step in bringing these land owners into the formal system, to enable them to access the resources that we call capital to get on with their lives,” Mr. Ennis said.
He encouraged the beneficiaries to, “treasure your titles, deal with them carefully . and make sure that they become your instrument of the key to your own personal success”.
One of the beneficiaries, Justice of the Peace, Percival McCatty said he was very pleased to receive his title. “I want to give a hearty thank you to all concerned, the Ministry of Agriculture and Lands, and in particular the National Land Agency. I know what the agency is doing for us and those who haven’t received [titles] as yet,” he said.
Of the 33 recipients, 32 are from five land settlements in Clarendon, namely Rhymesbury, Butler’s Run, Leicesterfield, Whitney and Mears.
The Commissioner of Lands currently has 337 land settlement properties across the island.