Nidco: No mystery in Tobago land acquisition

The National Infrastructural Development Company Limited (Nidco) says it has been transparent with Canaan/Bon Accord property owners about plans to acquire their lands for expansion of the ANR Robinson International Airport and supporting infrastructure. 

In a release on April 1, the company pledged to continue the process of communication with the residents and businesses at a consultation on April 5. 

Nidco has been mandated by the government to oversee and manage the airport expansion project.

Affected property owners staged a peaceful march on the streets of Crown Point on March 28 to demand more information on the land acquisitions.

The group, operating under the banner of  Provide Equivalent Equitable Compensation for Everyone (PEECE) Movement, said they were "in the dark " about how the project would affect them.

PEECE Movement's chairperson Rhonda Hackett cited the issuing of a Section 3 Land Acquisition Notices to some residents as evidence that they are being displaced without the required information.

However, Nidco said it has been sharing details of plans with residents  

"A Section 3 Notice is NOT an eviction notice. It allows surveyors to enter and measure the lands under consideration," Nidco said. 

The company said it began communicating with residents on January 20.

Advertisements were placed in two daily newspapers informing them of the social survey to be undertaken by ACQ and Associates. 

Trinidad and Tobago Postal Corporation (TTPOST) handed out flyers, loudspeakers blared information and social survey consultants visited homes and businesses to gather information from residents, the release stated.

- by Camille McEachnie