Co-op feudThe family from Enmore North, East Coast Demerara who were traumatised and threatened by demolition workers on Thursday has moved back into their house following intervention from ranks of the Cove and John Police Station.The family told this publication on Friday that after their belongings had been thrown out of the house, senior Police officers ensured that the items were placed back into the building.One of the three affected persons, Nadia Rambarran, told this publication on Friday that the Police went to the area and, having assessed the situation, told them to move their items back into the house.“The Police went there yesterday (Thursday) and we fetch in back we things them.Some of the household items that were thrown out of the houseThey tell us to open the fence, and we get to put the things back into the house. And we had to go back to the Police station. Right now, we moving back into the house,” Rambarran said.This disturbance between the co-op society and residents of Enmore commenced a few weeks ago, when the co-op redistributed lands to its new members even though some of the occupiers of the lands had been resident there for in excess of 30 years, and had clearly expressed whom they wanted to inherit the portions of land they were occupying. Those residents became alarmed when, without their knowledge, the leader of the co-op society issued new documents to other persons to take control of their lands. Moreover, demolition workers were hired to demolish their houses.Rambarran, who was at the scene of the demolition exercise, explained that she was told not to return to the property, and threats were made to burn the erected buildings.The situation had gotten to a point where the residents were completely helpless, and sought assistance from former Attorney General and Member of Parliament (MP) Anil Nandlall.During his visit to the area to hear the plight of the people, Nandlall declared in no uncertain terms that what the co-op was doing was legally wrong, and ought not to be committed. The Police were later advised to provide protection to the people and ensure that they return to their dwellings.Nandlall outlined that while the co-op is in the process of redistributing the land, it cannot merely give the land to other members. He noted that when an occupier is deceased, that person’s beneficiary is supposed to be given the land. He also declared that it is not a case whereby the residents were squatting on the land.“That is not what the law says. The law of co-operative societies recognises transmission of interest upon death. If a person was a member of a co-op and would’ve been entitled to a plot of land…, when that person dies, that interest passes on to the beneficiary of that deceased person,” the former attorney general stated.Nandlall has promised that if the matter is not resolved, he would represent the residents in the High Court in order for their lands to be retrieved.“This matter will have to be resolved either amicably at the level of the co-op society, or the Chief Co-op Officer. If not, we’d have to engage in a head-on battle in the High Court, and I’ll be representing all these people who are affected by this problem,” he said.Efforts to contract the Enmore Co-op Society for a comment on the matter proved futile.
Enmore family moves back home