Gov’t seeks additional $755M for urgent D&I interventions

Government is seeking an additional $755 million from the National Assembly to conduct urgent drainage and irrigation interventions across Guyana.

The request was made by Minister of Agriculture, Zulfikar Mustapha, M.P, during the 32nd Sitting of the Twelfth Parliament on Monday.

Minister of Agriculture, Zulfikar Mustapha, M.P, during Monday’s sitting of Parliament.

The sum is part of the $ $21.4 billion supplementary funds being sought from the House by Senior Minister in the Office of the President with responsibility for finance, Dr. Ashni Singh, M.P, to cover current and capital expenditures.

With the ongoing unprecedented rainfall, government wants to ensure there is sufficient and effective drainage and irrigation capacity countrywide.

Providing an update on Monday, Minister Mustapha said due to the continuous rainfall in the Pomeroon, Region Two is mostly impacted. However, he noted that the situation is currently being monitored by the agriculture ministry and the Civil Defence Commission (CDC).

Additionally, the National Drainage and Irrigation Authority (NDIA) has put systems in place. According to reports, the water is receding successfully in many communities. 

The minister said the supplementary funds will help advance those efforts and expand the drainage capacity in other affected communities. Additional equipment will also be procured to assist with drainage enhancement.

As a member of the cabinet task force established by His Excellency, Dr. Mohamed Irfaan Ali, Minister Mustapha has the responsibility of ensuring all drainage facilities are in order, and pumps and kokers are operable.

Already, the ministry has increased the drainage at the Commerce Street sluice by installing a new pump there.

Engineers were also deployed to strategic areas nationwide, to monitor the level of water, specifically in the city.