The Virgin Islands government has signed a contract for the construction of a social home under the BVI Housing Recovery Assistance Programme.
E&K Construction, owned by Enos Aaron, has been tasked with the completion of the home for Mrs Irma Connor-Hodge. Although the value of the contract was not disclosed at the signing ceremony yesterday, it was indicated that the length of the contract would be three months.
Speaking at the contract signing ceremony, the Minister of Social Development Carvin Malone said it was a very special moment for him.
He said everyone is aware that both hurricanes Irma and Maria devastated the Virgin Islands
back in 2017, and although it might seem like a world apart, housing infrastructure recovery is still ongoing.
“The Housing Recovery Unit continues to work steadily making sure they give analysis to all of the applications. This means that we have much more requests than we have money but with the Housing Development Unit, they have been careful to make a careful analysis of every person coming into the department,” Malone said.
“We are pleased that we are here today to sign with the contractor, and he would be charged with developing the project and ensure sister Irma Connor-Hodge could finally be put to peace because at the end of the day she waited long, and she is a true symbol of patience and perseverance,” the Minister of Social Development added.
The Sixth District Representative Alvaro Maduro-Caines said she is overjoyed with the contract signing. She said she has been advocating for the project for a while and now to see it come to fruition has been pleasing.
“I am grateful for the Ministry of Social Development and the Premier to get the contract signed. When it was signed, I was jumping, and I was elated. Now that the day is finally here, I just begged the contractor please to do this speedily for me,” Maduro-Caines said.
Meanwhile, Premier Andrew Fahie
acknowledged the ongoing rebuilding process of homes, businesses and lives in the post-Irma and Maria era. He also noted it will take some time to rebuild and repair both public and private infrastructure. However, the Premier said he wanted to send a message of hope to the people of the territory.
“It is very important for our citizens to know that there is hope. The main thing about leadership in our governments is hope when there is a time of despair, I am very glad that we have been able to bring some hope after many inquiries by the member of the Sixth District, even when she was on the other side of the aisle,” Fahie
The contractor Aarons said he was privileged to have been tasked with building the home for ‘Irma’ knowing Hurricane Irma made her homeless.
He noted he only had three months, but he will do everything in his power to get the project going and completed on time.
Fifteen families have benefited from this programme through either repairs or construction of new houses since its inception.