Solve irrigation problem to stop declining padi yields in MADA area

The Consumers Association of Penang (CAP) urges the Muda Agricultural Development Authority (MADA) to take prompt action to resolve the problem faced by farmers in Kampung Kubang Pisang, Mukim Rambai, Pendang District, Kedah.

The problem faced since five years ago not only threatens the paddy plants grown by the farmers in the village but has also reduced their income during each harvest season.

The farmers here claim that the paddy field is always waterlogged because the drainage system in the area is not functioning properly due to poor maintenance. Hence harvesting cannot be done using harvesters, rendering crops being damaged.

Prior to this, farmers could get a yield of 80 sacks of paddy for each 0.3ha of cultivated fields, but due to lack of proper drainage system in the area they can only harvest 20 sacks of paddy.

CAP regrets that although the problems have been pending long, but till now no action has been taken to address the main causes of this problem.

If the situation is left unattended not only will it seriously affect the source of income of the farmers in the village, but the paddy fields in the village will be overgrown with weed and menerong trees.

In the long term CAP believes most or all of the paddy fields in the village will become uncultivable and the farmers in the village will lose their source of income. Thus far almost 20 hectares of rice land in the village is uncultivable and overgrown with weed.

CAP is concerned about the situation here because it will contribute to the decline of paddy area in MADA. If this issue is not taken seriously by the government and related agencies in the agriculture sector, our food security will be threatened in the future.

Press statement, 8 Sept 2014