This week we paid a visit to the forecourt of the Guyana National Stadium, Providence where the International Building Expo was being held and asked the people there for their thoughts on the initiative. Their comments follow:

Interviews and photos by Shakisa Harvey and Erica Williams

20130708sherwinSherwin Benjamin: ‘It is a good initiative, but I was expecting to see more building persons [contractors]. The information we are getting from the banks is good. They have great interest rates. They are catering for the poor and working class. But some of the houses, the prices are just too extravagant.’

20130708lakha Lakha Khan: ‘I thought it would have been more about building materials. This does not look like a building expo to me. I think a lot of companies should have come on board and showcased materials, like cement, etc. To me, it is just a show. I suggest all the contractors and so come on board and be on exhibit here for interaction. All I am seeing is bars with drinks, play area, a few houses and so.’

20130708dennisDennis Debidin: ‘It is very interesting. It is a chance to showcase what Guyanese can produce and that we can market to foreign countries. Our construction sector highlights various types of architecture and buildings for future development in the housing sector, in particular the much anticipated Silica City. So far, the expo is bigger and better than last year and also well-organised.’

20130708frederickFrederick Fox: ‘This expo is helpful to our society because it makes people aware of the quality of contractors Guyana has. Some people think Guyana has not reached the standards of overseas, but I feel we are great in construction on the whole; in designing and everything, and this is the chance to show that. The prices are good for the styles of the houses. In this economic climate, things are very expensive, so you have to expect a good house for a high price because materials and so are expensive.’

20130708susannaSusanna Hamilton-James: ‘Basically I came to see the different houses and the offers they are giving to the people. I saw one house which is reasonable. The price is high but it is worth it. I think that they should showcase more models though, with different patterns and designs and so on. More building places should come out and showcase what they have. Also I was looking forward to discounts or any offer or promotions to encourage people.’

20130708raulRaul Anderson: ‘I was waiting on land from the Housing Ministry since 2009. They sent a letter saying I get through then I decided I wanted one of the two-bedroom houses they are offering. After a long push-around, all I get is a promise: `We will call you back’. Then when you get through, it is like you are going around in circles with the bank, waiting on a call to get a house. So people like me come here today to see if we will go through that same procedure here again.’

20130708samanthaSamantha Garraway: ‘I think the houses are very pretty. It is a very good thing they are doing. You could come here and interview for your house lot. They would give ideas how to go into the bank for loans. It is very interesting. I came and saw exactly what I expected. It is nice to bring your children along for the experience. It is a learning experience for the ones in school. Also they are catering for low-income people.’

20130708sahadeoSahadeo Hadiaou: ‘The expo is a good concept because it highlights what we have locally and overseas. It gives options to choose from to build your dream home. Last year the expo was more attended. It is much better today, more technological. It is improving yearly. It’s going in the right direction.’

20130708kimKim Samuels: ‘It is good, fascinating; everything is in order. The expo is very edifying. The people at the booths for the banks are very helpful and they encourage you to want take the loans. The houses are very cute. I am very excited about them. It’s my second time here. It’s better than last year. I am completely satisfied with the way things are presented.’

20130708keishannKeishann Griffith: ‘I would like to applaud the government for this venture. It shows great potential for our economy. Many persons are being offered an opportunity to become homeowners for the first time at low costs, with affordable interest rates. And the contractors and other business are given the chance to attract customers. It is a win-win situation.’

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