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Psalms twenty-four verse one

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De ULP Guv-ah-mint will one day have to answer to de people of Can-one and who knows de whole country, foh ah most unpardonable sin committed against those poor Squatters who could ah only standby and watch, as dey homes were demolished by persons from de mainland who were recruited by Guv-ah-mint officials. Ah overs dat de demolition squad was given protection by armed policemen while de children of these house owners stood by traumatized and screaming as dey homes were mashed down. Man no matter how small or old or run-down de house might be, ah Vincy’s greatest ambition is to own ah piece ah land and build his/her lickle shanty. I am inspired daily by de number of persons, young, ambitious women in particular who come by seeking info about how dey could acquire dey own property.{{more}} And ah know ah number ah persons too who initially, were in no financial state to acquire land and build house, some didn’t even have ah wuk, but de passion, de “house culture” was alive inside dem. Wuk or no wuk, Money or no money, nothing will stop ah Vincy from getting his/her dream house. And dis is where Squatting plays ah significant role. There are people who squatted on lands, private as well as Guv-ah-mint and didn’t have ah job at de time, but over time dey were able to complete lovely homes on dat same piece ah squatting land. And some ah dem never had to face Bank. It is marvelous how dey do it.

But Squatting is supposed to be against de Law, it is illegal; ah say “is supposed to be”, because one Law say dat if yuh squat or occupy private lands without permission, de rightful owner could kick yuh and all yuh belongings off his/her property. But dey have ah next law called “Possessory Title” dat says while yuh squatting, dat is, breaking de law, if nobody challenges yuh, object to yuh squatting, and yuh manage to occupy de land foh twelve years without paying rent, den yuh could apply to Judge Albert Matthew and get legal title foh dat same piece ah land dat yuh illegally occupied in de first place. All yuh see how even Lawlessness could turn Lawful when it ready.

But squatting pon Guv-ah-mint land is ah different story. Yuh can’t squat on Guv-ah-mint lands and claim Possessory Title. Yet it is eye-run-ache dat de Squatting Culture operates at its highest level on Guv-ah-mint lands, in fact ah number of colourful, vibrant communities today have originated from Squatting, ah could name plenty: Die-man, Monkey Hill, Largo Height, Bum Bum, Bag-dad, Walvereaux, de Airport, Green Hill, Sharpes, Barracks, Spring Village, Keartons, Langley Park, stop? O.K.

HOW TO SQUAT

Squatting has ah procedure dat is standard. One Sunday yuh will see ah foundation line out, de next Sunday as unsightly as it might look, ah shanty gone up. Dis is done despite objections from de Guv-ah-mint Bailiffs. But votes are important, so when ever de Squatters are threatened to be thrown off de lands, de Par-liar-men-tear-in flex muscles and stops any ejection; and like ah week before elections, he would boost his chances at de polls with de installation of pipe-borne water and electricity, next it’s telephone and Cable TV. By de next election, those lands would be surveyed, roads paved, and legal titles issued to dem same Squatters. Last election, Squatters in Glen were refunded money by de ULP foh lands alleged to have been over priced by de NDP. There is ah positive side to all dis, after ah Squatter gets Title to de lands, s/he could now go to de Bank, borrow money and upgrade de home, den dey have to pay property tax, light, and water bills, meking ah significant contribution to de Revenue of de Country.

We are told dat de squatters at Can-One were on Guv-ah-mint lands, but de area way de houses were located were not allocated foh any specific purpose, not yet, in fact dem houses were well outside de area reserved foh de marine park. Now it seems as though de developers, far-reign-as of course, have dey eye on dat whole area, as well as another two hundred more acres near de Airport, really dey don’t want to see or have any natives watching dey guests or even living within close distance of their development, lets be frank, dey nah want Black People living close dem. So dey call foh their removal, and our lovers of Poor People Labour Guv-ah-mint reacted accordingly. De Prime Minister was not home, how lucky foh him, so is Sir Louis again. Poor Sir Louis, like he scoring big to get pick to go to ah Hell specially prepared foh Polly-trick-hans who commit terrible pull-it-tek-all sins. Pull-it-tek-all repentance is overdue Sir Louis.

Man ah really disappointed in de way dis regime treated dem Squatters in Can-One, giving Far-reign-as preference over yuh local people is unacceptable, but dat shouldn’t surprise any body, remember how de Farmers at Buccament were ruffed up and threatened if dey didn’t agree to surrender dey rights to de land to Far-reign Developers, white people again.

What could mek dis Guv-ah-mint all of ah sudden turn against Grenadines people like dat? Selling out Bequia lands, Taxing dem if dey want to go home, and now mashing down dey homes destroying de people’s shelter, aspirations and dreams. May we all look at Psalms 24 again: “ Don’t N.V Godless men, don’t even enjoy their company, for dey spend their days plotting violence and cheating”. I gone eh!

One love Bassy.

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