Home Letters Guyana’s agriculture spirit is truly alive
Agriculture, as it should be, is in overdrive in Guyana, and so I was happy when the Ministry of Agriculture took to the Pomeroon-Supenaam region and doled out vital agricultural equipment to enhance production in Region Two.
This phase is just a part of the national agenda, as the People’s Progressive Pary/Civic Government is bent on facilitating all “…over 1200 farmers in the regions all across the country…” with what is necessary in terms of equipment to boost farming.
Where the Pomeroon-Supenaam region is concerned, some “… $1.9M worth of agricultural inputs, to a total of 29 farmers from different farmers groups…” were the beneficiaries, as Minister of Agriculture, Zulfikar Mustapha, disbursed “…a small land tiller, water pumps, drip systems, shade house materials, a Mist Blower, a milking machine, and pasture wires.”
According to Delma Nedd, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Agriculture, “The agriculture sector is currently undergoing a transformation and modernisation (and) this equipment will aid expansion and diversification.” What Nedd pointed out is not news, as we can all attest to the many positive outcomes in recent times.
Editor, at half time this year, we note, as the Agriculture Minister pointed out, “Guyana is leading in the agriculture agenda in Caricom. The first half of the year was a very good one for us (Guyana), and we will continue on that trajectory. I am pleased to say that several projects have started this year, and we are seeing a lot of progress with them. One such example is corn and soya crops, with the success of this crop, I am optimistic that, going forward for the next half of the year, we will be able to produce over two or three thousand acres that we’ve spoken about.”
Lest people think that this kind of thing in Guyana is isolated and localised, I draw attention to the reality that agriculture can help reduce poverty, raise incomes, and improve food security for 80% of the world’s poor, who habitually live in rural areas and work mainly in farming. In fact, agriculture is essential for human survival, as history has shown, and thus it will remain the backbone of many nations’ economies.
I end with a good reminder that even though Guyana is experiencing the ‘oil boom,’ in his Budget 2023 presentation, Senior Minister in the Office of the President, Responsible for Finance, Dr. Ashni Singh, did emphasize to the nation at large “…the PPP/C Government remains committed to increasing production and productivity through expansion in acreages and use of technology and diversifying into new crops and varieties, promoting high-value and value-added, including through agro-processing and easing the access for farmers and consumers to market…in the interest of “advancing the food security and agri-business agenda” in partnership with the private sector.
So far, the commitment to agriculture from Government is being honoured, and the dividends are quite obvious. My hope is that all Guyanese would realise that we have non-oil wealth, and we must not allow it to go to a-waste.