The Booby Alley residents are reluctant to move and even more concerned after seeing the removal of the home of long-time resident Sharon Roberts’ on Sunday evening.
The removal of Roberts’ home supposedly paved the way for the start of the much-touted Chinese-funded $100 million Bobby Alley Redevelopment project, which is being spearheaded by the community’s Parliamentary Representative, Prime Minister Gaston Browne.
According to a resident that goes by alias ‘Bounty’, the residents refused to move because they are clueless as to where they should relocate to.
“Some people are willing to move, but they don’t understand anything because they don’t know where they would be going. Consultation … tell us what you’re doing properly so we can know.” he said.
“People refuse to move because they don’t know anything. But, I know if they get a good idea of what is going on and everybody is on the same page, they would make way for progress.” he added.
Another resident, ‘Jah Love, made the suggestion that the prime minister should use the space left by Roberts’ home to build one of the apartments so that residents may see a sample of the proposed redevelopment structure and evaluate for themselves.
On the other hand, Booby Alley Project Coordinator Hyacinth Lewis says she has visited each home and most of the residents agreed to the redevelopment.
She said there are three options available for residents.
The first option provides for a valuation of the owner’s land and structure where, once the value is agreed upon by both parties, that value will be applied to that of a new home in the redeveloped area.
The second option allows for the homeowner to be compensated after a valuation is completed, should they wish to leave the area altogether.
The third option, the government will provide assistance in providing lands elsewhere, comparable to the valuation provided for the property of the current owner.
Though residents agree to the three options provided, the common cry from those in the area is the absence of any formal offer made to them in writing.
“We have not moved [the remaining] persons and cannot move them until we have some level of certainty and security and that has not been done, because it’s in the works,” Lewis said.