Farming materials, new roads for Belladrum, nearby villages
Residents living in the vicinity of Belladrum in Region Five, were on Wednesday promised new roads, contracts and farming materials during a ministerial outreach.
Agriculture Minister, Zulfikar Mustapha was accompanied by Minister of Local Government and Regional Development, Nigel Dharamlall and Minister of Public Service, Sonia Parag at the outreach where residents raised the challenges they face within the village.
The visit was just one day after President Dr. Irfaan Ali met with a small group of farmers while attending an event in the region and promised the Agriculture Minister would visit the area to address their concerns.
During Wednesday’s meeting, farmers raised concerns about drainage, community infrastructure, and other community related issues.
Minister Mustapha, after listening to the residents, instructed officers from the MMA-ADA, NDIA and other agencies to visit the affected areas with farmers and develop a report.
He further explained that issues concerning the ownership of farmlands will be addressed.
“We received a list about two months ago and we are in the process of verifying the persons who own it…we have here almost 60 names and only nine names are verified. We will start the process while we are continuing to verify, these nine people will start the process to clear the land,” the minister said.
Meanwhile, the Agriculture Minister committed to assisting farmers with access to the necessary materials for farming but he told them that due to resources, the farmers would have to form groups.
“I can help you to get some planting material and even chemical to start back a crop.
“I don’t want to give one person a tiller. As long as I can establish that there is a group functioning, we can meet and give them a tiller,” Minister Mustapha said.
Meanwhile, Minister Dharamlall said that the residents will also benefit from new roads which they will also be hired to construct.
“We have the engineers here and they will go according with you and what we will do is they will issue contracts to people within the community and you will have to employ people in the community to get the work done we have to work out whether we help you to buy the materials and you do the labour or whether we give you the contracts and you do all of it,” Minister Dharamllal said.