Martin George, attorney for Alex Gift, who sent a pre-action protocol letter to the THA over its blocking his construction on resettlement lands, among other issues.
CAMILLE McEACHNIE

Alex Gift, a former resident of Gaskin Bay Road, Bon Accord, has sent a pre-action protocol letter to the Tobago House of Assembly (THA), giving the State seven days to respond or face legal action.

Gift, alias Tobago Chalkie, began constructing a house at the Shirvan Land Development on THA’s lands allocated for resettlement of residents affected by the ANR Robinson airport expansion project.

The letter dated January 12th, 2021, sent by Gift’s lawyer Martin George and Company, accuses the THA of strong-arming Gift by blocking access to his construction.

It says Gift had received only a $700,000 payment as settlement for his Bon Accord property but no documentation.

In addition, it claims he was also “permitted by an agent… of the ARC (Airport Relocation Committee) to commence construction of his dwelling house”.

It says Gift was not told by the THA and its agents—ACQ and Associates and ARC-—he had to pay for the $30 per square foot plot he began occupying in September 2020.

It claims that in January 2021, Gift received a “backdated” letter from the THA telling him he had until October 2020 to pay $153,999.30 for the plot.

The letter says Gift felt his monetary compensation for his Crown Point land and a lot of land at Shirvan was part of the overall package offered by the state.

“At no time was there any question of him having to pay for the said lot of lands,” the letter states.

On January 12, in a release, THA said it had halted construction projects at the Shirvan Road site because residents had broken the terms and conditions of the resettlement process.