CAP supports KEDA’s effort to rehabilitate idle land
The Consumers’ Association of Penang (CAP) urges the Department of Agriculture and the Department of Irrigation and Drainage (DID) Kedah to assist the Kedah Regional Development Authority (KEDA) to overcome the problem of water supply to paddy fields in Kampung Charok Sikin, district of Baling here.
If the problem continues, the rehabilitation of idle land in the village may fail and hence further jeopardize the livelihood of farmers here.
CAP found in a survey here that nearly 30 hectares of paddy fields in the village did not have proper irrigation system and pump facility, often causing dryness of the paddy fields. In addition, the irrigation system constructed in this area has been abandoned, broken and filled with bushes. The irrigation water gates here are in poor condition because not properly maintained.
Recently a farmer, Mohd Amir Ayob, 34, had suffered a loss of around RM40,000 last season after two crops of paddy did not produce any yield due to lack of water in the paddy fields in the village.
Thus CAP requests the relevant authorities to provide pump facility and build a better irrigation system so that water from the nearby Sungai Ketil can be effectively channeled for use by farmers here.
CAP believes that with the provision of better facilities, idle land in the village will be rehabilitated completely and can indirectly help increase the income of some 100 people whose land has been affected.
CAP supports and lauds the project implemented by the Kedah Regional Development Authority (KEDA) under the Ministry of Rural and Regional Development as it not only can overcome the problem of rural poverty but also can contribute to the food supply of the country.
In Kampung Lintang, Belantik in the district of Sik, Kedah, the villagers with the help of KEDA not only successfully rehabilitated idle land in the village, but also managed to grow and produce organic paddy/rice, gaining a lucrative income. CAP hopes such a project could be implemented widely not only in the interior of Kedah but also in other states where there is idle land.
Press Release – 22 April 2014