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Aug 29, 2000

Phase one of Yabra project dedicated

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Fifteen months ago ground was broken on an ambitious project that promised to change the face of one of Belize City’s most well known neighbourhoods. Fifteen months later phase one of the programme has been completed.

Jacqueline Woods, Reporting

The First phase of the project includes the construction of nine new homes, a police booth, basketball court and recreational centre.

Mark Espat, Area Representative, Albert Division

“We have worked with the DFC and with Newville Construction and a lot of other companies. We are very pleased with the way the project is turning out and I hope that the homeowners are pleased with the new area, the security, with the space, the layout, and the amenities. We are confident it will be a model community for southside Belize City.”

Since last week the homeowners have been moving into their new houses.

Lloyd Mangal, Homeowner

“Well I feel good about the house.”

Jacqueline Woods

“You finally have a house of your own.”

Lloyd Mangal

“Yeah, I’ve finally got a house of my own.”

Jacqueline Woods

“What was the situation before?”

Lloyd Mangal

“Well the situation never really…I just accept the house because I got it. Nothing was really hard for me. Mr. Mark Espat gave me one of the houses, and I just decided to accept it you know.”

Angus Cherrington, Homeowner

“Well I like the situation because it’s by a nice area, you are by the seaside and everything. I think it could be no better than this.”

Already, phase two of the project is under construction and is scheduled to be completed in three months.

Mark Espat

“Phase two includes the completion of the drains an sidewalks, a new park in front of the sea. It includes significant work at the old Yabra Cemetery, erecting a memorial wall, a new fence, consolidating the graves and additional homes. Also, some work on the football field. So that is phase two of the project.”

Jacqueline Woods

“When should that be completed?”

Mark Espat

“We expect that everything will be completed by mid November of this year.”

In his main address, Prime Minister Said Musa says the Yabra Redevelopment Project is just one of the many promises his government made to the Belizean people and he is pleased to see that the pledges are being fulfilled in various constituencies.

Prime Minister Said Musa

“This government has come into office with a clear determination to carry out its pledges to the Belizean people. We spent a great deal of time preparing the manifesto to “Set Belize Free”. It was perhaps the most ambitious manifesto that this country has every seen, since perhaps 1979, and the manifesto at that time pledged that yes, we are going forward to independence. Now at the turn of the century, we are carrying out this very ambitious programme to build these ten thousand homes, decent homes for our people, to create the jobs, to provide a good quality affordable education for our people and to widen the access, improving literacy and numeracy, to deal with health reform, an area that has been neglected for so many years. This government is going to tackle these very serious issues and we have been tackling them. Here in the Albert Division, this is a good representation of what can be done when people come together, when people are prepared to dream, but to carry out that dream by practical and effective action.”

Espat says he will work with the nine new homeowners and the five other families who will be getting their homes in phase two of the project to make this Yabra neighbourhood and the entire southside of Belize City a cleaner and safer place in which to live.

Work continues on the restoration of the adjacent Yabra Cemetery which will be turned into an archaeological reserve.

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