Minister of Agriculture Zulfikar Mustapha, M.P., told farmers from Crabwood Creek and Number 52-74 village in Region Six that preparations are being made to recommence the government’s flood relief programme.
The minister assured them on Saturday, that government has not forgotten its promise and is currently working assiduously to finalise the process for distribution. Over 200 farmers within these communities are yet to receive their flood relief grants.
“We are now working with the Ministry of Finance to receive it (monies) and I hope that this will be the last time that we will come and resolve that issue because there were a number of persons whose names were listed to be paid.
“There were persons who also collected money and at the end of the exercise, we were told that they were not entitled to collect,” the agriculture minister said.
To prevent a recurrence, Minister Mustapha stated that a list will be published and displayed for viewing. This will allow persons the opportunity to notify relevant authorities, should they recognise any discrepancy.
“We depend on the community to help us because when these monies were shared and those who didn’t deserve it collected… that must never happen again.”
Last year, there were reports made about persons falsifying their losses due to the nationwide flooding. Similar claims were also brought to government’s attention.
This caused government to launch an investigation into the matter.
So far, several persons have been identified which the agriculture minister noted “parted ways with government due to their dishonesty.”
More than $400 million from government’s $7.8 billion flood relief programme has been disbursed in the region.