By EDDIE OSIFELO
A LETTER carrying a $22 million request from the controversial Metropolis Mamara Development Ltd to the Government was leaked on social media yesterday.
Addressed to Fredrick Kologeto, the Minister for Commerce, Industries, Labour and Immigration, it revealed what could have been a âbehind-the-sceneâ arrangement between the developer and the Government.
Director of Metro Pacific, Hii Yii Ging, wrote the letter, dated May 17, 2021.
He requested Minister Kologeto to prepare $21,945,000 payment for the first 30 houses at Mamara, which the developer expects to be complete and ready by end of June 2021.
âAppreciate if the Government could ready the above payment upon the handover of the 30 units of houses,â the letter reads.
It added, the balance of the remaining 20 houses shall be open for sale to general public due to the high demand.
When contacted, Permanent Secretary for Commerce, Mr Riley Mesepitu said he was not aware of the letter.
âI am not aware of the letter. Iâll have to see it before I can comment on it,â Mesepitu told Island Sun yesterday.
The Government never disclosed to the public that it would pay the houses off from the developer.
The houses were built of imported pre-fabricated materials from China.
According to the letter, the costs and type of the houses are as follows:
- Type A: 3 bedroom and two-bathroom costs $997,000 each. So, the five houses will cost $4,987,500.
- Type B: 3 bedroom and one bathroom cost $798,000 each. So, the 10 houses will cost $7,980,000.
- Type C: 2 bedroom and one bathroom cost $598,500 each. So, the 15 houses will cost $8,977,500.
At the launch of the project early this month, Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare said the Mamara Township Development Project is a âhistoric milestone to be proud ofâ.
âThis is the moment we have been looking forward to for the last 25 years.
âIt is the culmination of a journey strategically taken in the way projects of this magnitude is nurtured through a system that is fraught with challenges ranging from land issues, to development concepts and varying interests,â Sogavare said.