‘Use rice dams in a responsible manner’ – Agri Minister urges as rainy season approaches
The Hydromet Office days ago issued an advisory that Guyana should expect continuous moderate to heavy rainfall throughout the weekend (April 9-11) along with thunderstorms and possible flooding in low lying areas.
As such, Agriculture Minister, Zulfikar Mustapha has urged rice farmer to act responsibly while utilizing agricultural dams when plying their trade.
“With the inclement weather that we are seeing now, these dams will become impossible [to traverse] once again and we will continue to do maintenance but I want to appeal to the farmers to use the dams in a responsible manner so that everyone could have a chance to harvest their produce,” the Minister appealed.
The government, he said, expended millions of dollars to rehabilitate rice dams countrywide as farmers often bemoan a lack of access to their crops due to the impassable dams.
With the rains here, there is a high possibility that those repaired dams could quickly be left in a deplorable state due to the heavy machines traversing daily.
For this reason, the Minister said farmers need to play their part in ensuring the dams are utilized in a proper manner.
“I am trying to put things in place to monitor the situation so that we can avoid any losses to farmers and at the same time, avoid flooding in residential areas like these and urban areas,” he added.
Currently, Government has put into operation several drainage pumps procured from a line of credit financing from the Indian Government at the tune of US$4 million. Those pumps, he said are on standby in the event of any floods countrywide.