SDLP MP Claire Hanna today led a delegation of residents and the building management company of Victoria Place apartments to meet with Finance Minister Conor Murphy to discuss a resolution to the cladding crisis within their building.
Mr Murphy has now committed to a £1m fund to remove aluminium composite material (ACM) cladding from private residential buildings over 18 metres.
The call for evidence is expected to start at the end of August with a time scale of four weeks and the Department of Finance has committed to work with residents to ensure eligibility is met for the £1m fund.
Speaking after the meeting South Belfast MP Claire Hanna said:
"Today was a positive day for residents. The Minister has committed to ensuring the residents of Victoria Place are not footing the bill for a mistake not of their making. The Minister has committed this funding in light of serious safety issues being discovered in this building and we hope that following the scoping exercise and call for evidence that a precedent will be set for other buildings found to have ACM cladding
"A combination of determination and sustained pressure from residents, along with representation, has ensured that the Minister listened to the plight of those living in Victoria Place and a fund has been secured for the work to be carried out. We must now recognise the need to legislate to protect leaseholders from remedial costs when buildings are determined to be unsafe."