Mara, EBB poised for massive agri, other development – Min. Mustapha
Farmers of Mara and other communities along the East Bank of Berbice, Region Six now have access to approximately 10,000 acres of land to further ramp up agriculture productivity.
Government intends to reintroduce the agriculture drive to include citrus crops and other fresh fruits and vegetables, while opening up more lands for rice cultivation.
Last Saturday, during a community meeting, Minister of Agriculture, Zulfikar Mustapha said over the few years, government has been working with the farmers to develop the area.
The aim is for the East Bank of Berbice to be one of the most productive areas in the country.
“And the president, when he came the last time, said that he wants to make this area once again a productive area. Since then, to now, we have excavated approximately 22 canals in this area. Those canals will give service to approximately 10,000 acres of land…So, in the entire area, we have started work to rehab almost all the canals,” Minister Mustapha stated.
A committee which was established to work with the residents, is also working on a programme since many farmers have already requested for the clearing of their lands to cultivate crops.
Minister Mustapha said government is also collaborating with private investors to provide farmers with the necessary investment, as new crops can be grown there.
“We are working with private investors to link capital and asset [land], so that we can link the farmers with investors… Areas like these are important to us, where we will continue to make budgetary allocation and the necessary input in the agriculture sector,” the minister explained.
Guyana is steadily building its agro-processing industry, with some 12 facilities already constructed across the country.
Two new facilities are expected to be established in Crabwood Creek and Orealla in the region, this year.
Minister Mustapha noted, “We are looking to build one in this area, so that you can bring more value to your produce rather than to sell the primary produce to the people out there. All these facilities will come your way,”
Farmers from the East Bank Berbice area have also benefitted from the distribution of agriculture inputs including fertilisers, black giant chickens, and over 500 trays of planting materials and seeds.
Minister Mustapha said extension officers will continue to visit the area regularly to provide enhanced services to farmers.
The community meeting was led by President, Dr. Mohamed Irfaan Ali and included several ministers of government and other officials.