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Monday, April 22, 2024

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PNQ: Obeegadoo Insists GM Will Deliver 12000 Housing Units

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Government promises to construct and deliver 12,000 housing units was the theme of the Private Notice Question this morning in Parliament. Deputy Prime Minister Steven Obeegadoo insisted that Government will deliver these houses whilst Xavier-Luc Duval accused him of making false promises to the poorest category of the population.

In his answer, the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Lands and Housing explained that the project has been greatly impacted by the pandemic. Steven Obeegadoo added that on at least two occasions the tendering exercise had to be cancelled. The last time, the companies that participated increased the construction costs by more than 30%. He finally said that the large-scale project has been reviewed to bring down the cost. The housing will be of the NHDC type.

In one of his supplementary questions, the Leader of the Oppositon asked the Deputy Prime Minister if he is keeping the promise of allowing Mauritians to buy some of the Rs 700,000 homes. Steven Obeegadoo denied that he had ever mentioned this figure. He insisted to speake of an NHDC housing unit in the past. He added he never gave that number for the units which will be constructed by New Social Living Development Ltd.

Xavier-Luc Duval also said that, according to him, the average cost of each house will be Rs 6 million and not Rs 1.9 million. Steven Obeegaddo replied that he cannot predict what the final cost of the construction of the houses in question will be. However, he said that the aim is to build and deliver 12,000 affordable homes.

The exchange between Xavier-Luc Duval and Steven Obeegadoo also focused on the publication of offers received. The leader of the opposition made a request to Steven Obeegadoo to publish the bids. The latter replied that New Social Living Development Ltd is a Special Purpose Vehicle and is not subject to the regulations of the Public Procurement Act. However, he added that if the PMSD has done that in the past, he will gladly do so.

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