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Minnis: Govt can’t afford more than $10,000 for homeowners

The government cannot afford to give more than $10,000 in repair assistance to Bahamians who lost their houses in Hurricane Dorian, Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis said yesterday.

However, he assured the government will do all it can.

“We would be guided by international organizations,” he said.

“You’d find that they may come and make more contributions.

“No country by itself could do it. And The Bahamas, we’re small. And we recognized from day one that we could not do it alone. And that was why, thank God, we had all the assistance of other countries and NGOs. So, as they make more contributions, we would be able to do more.

“But we will do all that we can.”

Hurricane Dorian tore through Abaco and Grand Bahama nearly six months ago, leaving at least 70 dead and thousands displaced and homeless.

Hundreds of evacuees lived in several temporary shelters on New Providence in the aftermath of the storm.

The numbers at the shelters have gradually decreased. However, some people on the ground in the storm-ravaged areas of Abaco and Grand Bahama have expressed concern that they don’t have sufficient resources to rebuild.

The government’s Small Home Repair Programme was also launched earlier this month.

Under the program, residents whose homes were destroyed will be eligible to receive $10,000 in vouchers. Those with major damage will receive $7,500 in vouchers.

Homeowners whose homes suffered medium damage will be eligible for $5,000 in vouchers and those whose homes sustained only minimal damage will be eligible for $2,500 in vouchers.

The program also stipulates that only homes that were uninsured will be eligible and that only Bahamian homeowners who can provide proof of residence on August 31, 2019, can qualify for the program.

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