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Minister with responsibility for Housing, Ministry of Transport, Works and Housing, Hon. Dr. Morais Guy, has urged persons in possession of land titles, to tap into the investment potential of these instruments, particularly for the benefit of their children’s education.

Speaking at Saturday's (September 8) presentation of certificates of titles to beneficiaries under the Operation PRIDE scheme in Hanover, at the Lucea Anglican Church hall, Dr. Guy said that as an investment option, a land title was capable of yielding significant benefits for the holder and, by extension, the country.

“You are going to be investing in something that is going to turnover capital; and when you do that, you are not only assisting yourself in the process, you are growing this economy of Jamaica. When we release these titles, we are saying to the new landowners of Jamaica – ‘put your capital to work for the development of yourself’,” he told the gathering.

The Minister pointed out that the Government has significantly discounted the cost to prepare titles, in order to enable more persons to have a chance of becoming legitimate owners of lands they may have had in their possession, without requisite legal documents.

He also urged persons having reservations about the titling process, consequent on previous challenges they may have experienced, to seize on the opportunity presented by the administration to formalize their holdings.

“Essentially, we are unleashing the potential of land and the capacity of land to develop this country. Come in and pay, because when you pay you can get your title almost the next day, or in a short period of time. It’s an effort on our part to ensure that the titles reach out there. Use the title…(wisely), (and) use it judiciously for the development of your family,” Minister Guy said.

Some 56 persons resident in Operation PRIDE developments in Elgin Town, Fisherman’s Village and Bulls Bay in Hanover, received land titles from the Housing Agency of Jamaica (HAJ), which administers the programme.

Noting that the presentations marked a “proud moment” for the stakeholders involved, Member of Parliament for Eastern Hanover, Dr. D.K Duncan, who spoke at the function, described land ownership as one of the “most fundamental” engagements for any Jamaican.

“To have the legal title for your own property…it is the foundation upon which our society is built; upon which we have law and order,” Dr. Duncan stated.

For his part, State Minister for Agriculture and Fisheries and Member of Parliament for Western Hanover, Hon. Ian Hayles, contended that “a title is the most important piece of document that you can have, outside of a (birth) certificate or a degree”.