Disputed land which now houses West Park, Diego Martin and which is to be the location of a recreational park and $230 million in government projects, has made Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley a few enemies, he said yesterday.
Dr Rowley turned the sod for the new Diego Martin Regional Complex and the Diego Martin Vehicular Overpass there yesterday.
“In my assignment as Member of Parliament I have made four enemies. Three of them were made right here and those I know about, I’m not talking about those I don’t know about,” as he explained that he ruffled feathers by giving highly coveted land in Victoria Gardens to be put to use by the Diego Martin Regional Corporation and the Urban Development Corporation of Trinidad and Tobago Limited (Udecott) as opposed to other interested investors.
“The reason was this parcel of land, this whole parcel of land between the mall between Victoria Gardens and the river was the most sought after piece of public land in the entire country and the amount of people wanted this land you would not believe and they made all kinds of approaches from NGOs to private use to even public use,” he said.
“There are persons who wanted it and thought that the Member of Parliament was to represent them in getting it. I have lost the fellowship of such persons but that goes with the territory.”
The Prime Minister explained that the land was even almost claimed by a Ministry before he informed the corporation of the intrusion.
“I had to call the mayor and said do you know that your land is being stolen. I said get up and stop it because this land is to be put to use for the people of the western peninsula in the most public of ways and that is now the outcome,” the Prime Minister said.
The land will be now be used to house the new Diego Martin Regional Corporation Administrative Complex to replace the cramped house as described by the Prime Minister which the corporation currently calls its head office.
The building is set to cost an estimated $40 million.