The government of Sao Tome and Principe plans to launch an international tender to recover houses dating back to the colonial period in the country’s coffee and cocoa plantations, Sao Tome’s Prime Minister said Wednesday.
Through this tender the government “intends to preserve the architectural style of these colonial houses while allowing for development of rural and ecological tourism,” said Gabriel Costa, at the closing session of National Tourism Week.
In Sao Tome and Principe there are still more than thirty houses and hospitals in the old coffee and cocoa plantations, all of which were built in the colonial period, which ended with the country’s independence in 1975.
In 1989, as part of a structural adjustment programme imposed by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and financed by the World Bank, the government of Sao Tome and Principe put in place a programme of land reform and privatised the country’s 14 agricultural companies, portioning out their land.
The houses remained in state ownership but, without maintenance, they fell into disrepair. (macauhub/ST)