St Johns, Antigua – Former government minister Asot Michael is lamenting the frustration he is experiencing with building a modern community center with his own money for the constituency he represents in Parliament.

In a press statement on Monday, the St Peters MP said the project is part of a wider social and economic transformation plan for the constituency:

“My vision has always been about economic transformation capable of generating the opportunities that will allow constituents to do better for themselves, their families and their loved ones. In this regard, we wanted to build a house of many rooms. The foundation would be the St Peter’s Trust Foundation, a non-political, non-profit organization through which we would transform this beautiful town of Parham.

“The plan was two-fold. We wanted to restore Parham to its former glory in the eyes of all Antiguans and Barbudans while creating lasting employment and other economic opportunities for the people of St Peter’s. We help ourselves as much as we can, but even in the abundance of government development assistance, we are on our own”.

The MP said he is concerned that the initiative to build the modern community centre is being seriously frustrated:

“We got a Cabinet Decision to use 3 acres of land in Parham for a multi-purpose recreation and educational center for both the youth and the elderly in the constituency. It will provide for:

“A 150-unit Computer Clinic to replace the computer facility that was burnt to the ground in the 2009 election, “A modern Library; Night Classes to teach a range of subjects; A Day-Care Centre; A Senior Citizens Recreational Centre”

The facility is estimated to cost some $2.4 million dollars which Mr. Michael said he is committed to provide. But he believes that constituency development projects of this nature will never be accomplished without the assistance of Government.

After waiting for two and a half years for Cabinet approval of the land, Mr. Michael says the Chief Lands Officer disclosed he was recently “instructed to hold off on the land for the multi-purpose education and recreation center”.

Mr. Michael is hoping that the matter can be resolved quickly so he can move on with “this very important community project”.