Home News Drought severely affecting Region 1 residents
…say more can be done to offer substantial relief
The dry weather season continues to affect residents and farmers in hinterland communities throughout the country. Residents of Region One (Barima-Waini) are complaining of the negative impacts of the lack of access to potable water. Residents and farmers continue to suffer the harsh effects of the dry spell since there is not enough being done by the water company to offer substantial relief.
Residents reached out to Guyana Times on Wednesday to express concerns over the situation and their dissatisfaction with the lack of adequate resources by Guyana Water Inc (GWI) to offer assistance to them.
Leon McIntosh, a resident of Port Kaituma, told this publication that the dry spell is severely affecting the residents and no assistance is being offered by the utility company. “This is a very uncomfortable situation here. We are suffering. There is no water. Springs are dry and we are left to find water the best way we know how,” he said.
He added that there is scheduled pumping in most villages and this is not enough due to the number of persons from all the communities that have to access the limited water. “So it’s like everybody from all communities flocking one place to get the little water available there. The Government has to do better than this,” he said.
Meanwhile, farmers are also suffering losses and are facing extreme difficulty in feeding their families. Nathaniel Caesar, who also reached out to this newspaper, said that he will be unable to feed his family since he depends on farming for his daily bread and the lack of water is seriously affecting him and other farmers in the area.
“We are facing hardships. Everybody. Nothing can be done without water and this is going on since the dry weather start and nothing ain’t really being done by the Administration to help in the long-term. Every year is the same thing,” he said.
Meanwhile, in an invited comment on Wednesday, Region One Chairman, Brentnol Ashley told Guyana Times that the dry spell is severely affecting all communities in the region as the water level of the GWI springs dropped drastically and pumping is being done periodically once per week and three times per week in some areas. This, he said, is having harsh effects on residents since there is very limited access to potable water. He added that as a result of the dry spell, the rivers are salted, making it impossible for residents of riverine communities to access. Subsequently, those residents are walking for miles to access the limited water supply available in springs.
“The severe water shortage is putting a strain on communities,” he said. Ashley further stated that the GWI is making efforts to bring some relief to residents and officials are expected to visit the areas this week to assess the situation and determine what can be done to offer assistance urgently.
He confirmed that the lack of water is also affecting farmers in the area who depend on farming for their livelihood. Guyana Times was unable to reach the public relations department of GWI for a comment on the efforts being made by the company to offer relief to the residents in the region.