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  • Prime Minister Simpson Miller, on June 26, handed over 45 Certificates of Ownership to former occupants of Sugar Cane Estate Barracks in Barham, Shrewsbury and Masemure, in Westmoreland.
  • This, the Prime Minister said, represented phase one of the Sugar Workers Relocation Project in the parish.
  • The Prime Minister also noted that barrack-dwelling families and workers in three sugar cane dependent communities in Westmoreland, will see their living conditions dramatically improved.

Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Portia Simpson Miller, on June 26, handed over 45 Certificates of Ownership to former occupants of Sugar Cane Estate Barracks in Barham, Shrewsbury and Masemure, in Westmoreland.

This, the Prime Minister said, represented phase one of the Sugar Workers Relocation Project in the parish.

The Prime Minister also noted that barrack-dwelling families and workers in three sugar cane dependent communities in Westmoreland, will see their living conditions dramatically improved under phase two of the Sugar Estate Barracks Resettlement Housing Project.

Speaking at the handing-over ceremony in Shrewsbury, Mrs. Simpson Miller said that sub-divisional plans for the development have been submitted to the Westmoreland Parish Council for approval, after which families who did not benefit under phase one will have the opportunity to own new and improved living spaces.

Road infrastructure, storm water drains, sewerage connection and treatment systems, as well as electrical and potable water systems are features of the new development, she said.

“The second phase will address the dire needs of those residents who did not reside in the barracks at the time of divestment, but who live formally and informally on the sugar estate. This government is duty-bound to address those needs,” the Prime Minister said.

The project will be implemented within a partnership agreement between the National Housing Trust (NHT) and the Sugar Company of Jamaica (SCJ).

However, unlike phase one, these housing solutions will be sold to beneficiaries, the Prime Minister stated.

Similar benefits are to be rolled out in the sugar dependent communities of Springfield, Golden Grove and Stokes Hall under the wider programme.

By the end of calendar year 2014, Government plans to resettle about 876 residents of sugar estate barracks in sugar dependent communities across the island, where approximately 400 housing solutions will be put in place at the seven relocation sites.

The national project, which is funded in part by the European Union (EU), has so far seen over $14 billion spent on relocation projects in sugar producing areas.