60 acres of land to be developed for farming at Sand Hill

The content originally appeared on: INews Guyana

The government will boost the agricultural production in the village of Sand Hill, Region Ten by facilitating the clearing of about 60 acres of land for community farming.

President, Dr Mohamed Irfaan Ali made the announcement during a meeting with residents of the village on Saturday.

He said that the government recognises the need to ramp up production, and will implement a series of interventions to achieve this goal.

These acres of land will be dedicated to a specific crop, such as plantain. This measure will also ease the strain of fluctuating prices, allowing them to focus on a more stable income source.

“So, if we have 30 families here, and we look at creating a highly intensive farm area of about, let’s say, two acres each. And we dedicate those 60 acres to a specific production. And we fix the costs,” the president explained.

He said that the government will assist with the capital investment of drainage and land preparation, and the residents will be responsible for maintaining the land.

The president also pointed out that farmers along the Demerara River have raised concerns about getting their produce to the markets.

To ease their transportation woes, President Ali said that the government will look into procuring two cargo boats.

“You guys can maintain the boats. So, all you have to do as a farmer is ensure that you work on the maintenance of the boat. You work on the fuel. And those two boats can service these farms that we’ll set up,” he added.

Additionally, the president explained that the aim is to ensure that each household is able to have more disposable income. With some 30 households in the village,

President Ali suggested that each household establish a shade house on their land.

The government will supply the roofing material, and train persons to manage these shade houses. This project, the president said, would be spearheaded by the women in the village.

According to the head of state, these households stand to earn approximately $700,000 per year from this project.

“We have calculated that even with a short-term crop, once we help you with the roofing material and you do it properly, because we expect you to spend time in the backyard garden on the shade houses, and then we have one company, the Guyana Marketing Corporation, [that] can take all of these things out. So, what we will do is put this in your backyard, because we believe in empowering families, adding to your disposable income. This is how you build prosperity,” President Ali emphasised.

The Guyanese leader also encouraged the residents to get more involved in honey production, which he identified as a lucrative industry.

Recently, the president announced plans to establish a national honey bank to enhance the efficiency and quality of honey production, while maximising the country’s economic potential.

He pledged continued support for the village, pointing out that Sand Hill has been no stranger to the government’s transformational programmes.

In the areas of education and human services, the head of state highlighted that almost $30 million has been invested in the village, while in agriculture, more than $15.5 million has been expended to date.

Issues related to mining and logging concessions were also raised, and the president said that representatives from the Guyana Forestry Commission (GFC), as well as the Minister of Natural Resources, Vickram Bharrat, will return to the village in the new week to address these.

“We are going to follow up on all these things. A team will visit you in the new week to tell you how we are going to implement them,” President Ali vowed. [DPI]