The Hydromet Department has announced a consultant predicting high intensity rainfall events over the next three to four days, and Agriculture Minister Zulfikar Mustapha on Friday conducted a site visit to two of the recently acquired drainage pumps in Georgetown to ensure the structures functioning properly. .
One of the pumps is located in Sussex Street and the other is at Ruimveldt.
A report from the Department of Public Information noted that Mustapha had said the pumps needed to be visited. He said it was important to assess the city’s drainage structures ahead of the anticipated rainy weekend, given that many areas in Georgetown are prone to flooding.
“… From the NDIA, we have boosted our drainage capacity with three additional pumps through the India Credit Line. We were able to purchase 12 additional pumps at a cost of US $ 3.5 million. One of these floodwater pumps costs US $ 500,000, and we have three of those in Georgetown to boost the city’s drainage capacity. One of these pumps can drain 35,520 gallons of water per minute. With such a high drainage capacity, I hope we can avoid the kind of flooding we’ve had over the past few months.
“The City Engineer has also assured me that he has enough human resources to manage these structures; not only to ensure that they remain active, but that they act in a timely manner, because we do not want to repeat what happened two weeks ago, ”said Mustapha.

Further, given the inclement weather, he urged rice farmers to take precautions when crossing the dams to transport their paddy from the fields.
“We are in harvest season right now, with about 50 per cent of the rice fields completed. Prior to the harvest period, the Ministry (Agriculture) would have spent millions of dollars to rehabilitate several dams so that farmers could transport their paddy out of the fields. Due to the inclement weather, many of those dams are becoming impossible once again.
“I want to assure our farmers that we will continue to maintain these dams; but, at the same time, I want to appeal to the farmers to use the dams responsibly, so that everyone would have the opportunity to bring their produce out, ”he said.
In addition, the Minister said that based on the information he has been receiving from the Guyana Rice Development Board, he is expecting a small crop this season.
“We have seen an increase in our quota for Brazil from 10,000 tonnes to 34,000 tonnes of rice. We also have new markets in Hungary and Latvia, so, overall, our overall export quota will increase and, at the same time, we will see an increase in the production of this crop. This is why we are working to put things in place, so that we can avoid, or at least reduce, farmers’ losses and also avoid flooding in residential areas, ”said Minister Mustapha.
He also said he would be conducting other site visits to pumps along the coast over the next few days.
The CEO of the National Drainage and Irrigation Authority Fredrick Flatts, Board Chairman Lionel Wordsworth, and other NDIA officials also attended the exercise.

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