The Managing Director of the National Housing Authority (NHA), Prince A. Wreh, says the construction of new homes for displaced residents of West Point has created jobs for 150 victims, who are involved in the construction of the housing estate as masons, carpenters, foremen and helpers, among others.
Speaking to journalists yesterday at the NHA head office in Monrovia, Wreh said the initial amount of US$500,000 provided by the Liberian government to build homes for the displaced is being used to get half of the job done.
The beneficiaries are those who were affected by the erosion in the township of West Point, he said.
Director Wreh lauded NHA’s partnership with the Monrovia City Corporation (MCC), the West Point Affected Sea Erosion Committee, as well as Liberian-owned construction companies that are getting the job done, for their cooperation.
“This project originally started with the total cost of US$1,250,000 for the construction of 108 units within the VOA camp. Now, we are delighted that the government has provided a total of US$500,000 for the commencement of the project,” Director Wreh said.
The NHA director said nine Liberian contractors are involved in the construction of the units for the current phase of the project.
“The NHA remains committed to ensure that beneficiaries work with the contractors in order to earn something to allow them to buy things during their relocation,” he said.
Director Wreh said the current phase of the project will be completed in September this year, adding that collaboration with the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning (MFDP) has yielded good results for the project’s commencement.
“We are aware of the constraints faced by the national government in terms of budgetary allocation, especially the third quarter of the year, but we remain very optimistic about getting the required amount earmarked for the entire project to ensure that the contractors continue the work,” NHA Director Wreh told reporters.
He commended President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf for her concern for the displaced in West Point and said the NHA is working to ensure that those affected participate in the project, including the design of their houses.
He said the project would bring about economic empowerment to the people, adding “There will be a water system to ensure proper sanitation as well as a playground.”
Director Wreh added that about 1,400 sea erosion victims are expected to benefit from the project in the VOA community in Brewerville.
Mutadi Davies, NHA deputy managing director for technical services, said the first phase of the project is being constructed on 12.5 acres of land, adding that the distance from the main road to the estate is approximately one mile.
Demore W. Moore, West Point Disaster Committee chair, also lauded President Sirleaf for the initiative to address the housing challenges faced by those made homeless by the erosion in West Point.
Moore, on behalf of his committee, certificated Mr. Prince Wreh, MFDP’s Boima Kamara, and Mayor Clara Doe-Mvogo of the Monrovia City Corporation for their contributions to the relief of Liberians made homeless and displaced by the erosion at the township of West Point.