Home Letters Deliberate political stratagem by APNU/AFC unleashed torrent of hardship upon farmers
In Region Five, a serious disaster was avoided. Most small rice farmers in this region had made up their minds that the autumn crop of 2020 would have been the last time they would be planting rice in the MMA-ADA Scheme. The very large farmers salivated at the opportunity to eliminate small farmers, which would have been disastrous, as the entire class structure would have been changed in Region 5, with many immediately falling into poverty from their solid, stable middle class.
Sycophants of the previous Government waited to see the destruction of the lives of these people with maniacal glee. It was a matter of policy, and a deliberate political stratagem, that the previous administration unleashed a torrent of hardship upon farmers. The farmer, whose humble existence is surpassed only by his industrious nature, was placed in a position in which he was forced to abandon his own livelihood and fight for a day-to-day survival.
Enter the PPP/C Government which, upon assumption of office, immediately reversed the Drainage and Irrigation and Land Rent Charges in the MMA-ADA that were installed on farmers. This single measure provided disposable income upwards of one point five billion dollars that farmers might most likely spend in Region 5. The Government also removed VAT on fertilisers, agricultural machinery, and pesticides.
Significantly the Ministry provided support to the MMA-ADA to begin in the MMA-ADA Scheme critical works that had been severely dilapidated and neglected. Without this intervention, thousands of acres of rice would have been left in the fields to spoil as access dams, bridges and canals had to be rehabilitated, and, in some cases, completely rebuilt.
Hundreds of miles of Drainage and Irrigation channels were also cleaned, as those had been neglected and left very clogged. Neglect and destruction were a state of existence that the previous Government had been comfortable with, but this Government has shown no tolerance for.