Extensive drainage works ongoing at Lowlands
-residents praise Minister Mustapha’s prompt intervention
Eighty-eight-year-old, Ms. Lorence Chester is among several Lowlands, East Coast Demerara (ECD) residents who are thankful for the ongoing extensive drainage and irrigation works which started in her community last week.
The upgrade started on Thursday, one day after Minister of Agriculture, Hon. Zulfikar Mustapha met residents and farmers to listen to their concerns.
Today, Ms. Chester told DPI that she did not attend the meeting because she is unable to move about on her own, but “the evening I was listening to the radio and I heard the Minister was here and they said help will come and work will start in the new week.”
“When I see them come, I was so excited, I called Kumare (her neighbour) and said we getting help!”
The elderly woman relayed that her yard flooded due to the clogged drains and she had spent a lot of money over the years, to rectify the damage the floods had caused to sections of her property. After today, she said, she does not expect to have to deal with such challenges.
Her neighbour, Ms. Kumare Ramphar expressed similar sentiments. She too lauded the Minister’s timely intervention, noting that when the community is inundated it is even difficult for residents to traverse the streets. “This is good for me because the water will get to drain out,” Ms. Ramphar said.
Other residents were also pleased to voice their expectations of the project, which is scheduled to be completed in three weeks’ time.
For Mr. Chumandat Persaud, “it’s a good initiative that they are clearing the place because the other day we had a flood and everybody were affected. So, it is a good thing they are doing and I am glad for that.”
On Wednesday, Minister Mustapha promised to dispatch the excavator to starts works today. However, the machine was dispatched on Thursday and immediately put to work, bringing relief to the residents. The machine will clear some 2,770 rods of canals.
Residents and farmers were encouraged to examine the work to ensure that it is completed to their satisfaction. The Minister said the excavator would not leave the community until the project is completed. He also provided a telephone number for persons to contact the Ministry to report any issues or seek guidance.
Minister Mustapha’s outreach to Lowlands is not the first of its kind. Two machines were previously dispatched to Hope and Unity, ECD to conduct critical drainage works there.
Drainage works were also done at Bee Hive and Greenfield, benefiting farmers and residents who commended the Minister for his timely intervention which saw several of the main canals being cleared for the first time in years.