Several households in the riverine community of Baracara (up the Canje Creek) have been under flood water for almost two years but while the Government through the Regional Democratic Council has been assisting in the form of food hampers and cleaning supplies, residents are now calling for additional support to move to higher ground.
Speaking with MTV News Update recently, cash crop farmer Burnell Amsterdam explained that his home has been under flood water for almost two years and although it would recede to a certain height, within days the water would rise again forcing several families from within the community to relocate to the town of New Amsterdam.
He noted that while he is not blaming the Government, he understands that it is the season that is causing the rise of water on the land in parts of Baracara. However, Mr Amsterdam disclosed that he had to move from his home along with his poultry to higher ground where he is staying with other relatives as a result of consistent high water in the area.
The farmer noted that the flood will continue and he is therefore hoping that the Government will intervene and provide “individuals with some grants so that they can build their home at a high spot where they can be comfortable because most of us on this low line here it ain't nice for us and even on the other side even though it is high it still have a lot of water.”
At present, certain parts of Baracara are under seven to eight feet of water which has been affecting loggers as they are unable to bring out their logs from the backlands which also have some flooding. He is hoping that the relevant authorities can visit the area and put systems in place so that the water can be removed from the farmland and determine whether the flooded area could be empoldered.
Another farmer, Vanroy Dejonge related that the community of Baracara depends on farming and logging which have been severely affected as a result of the accumulation of water on the land. He said as a result of the discontinuation of those activities, he is hoping that the Government can assist with small grants so residents in the area can venture into other trades to earn a living.
“Need something to survive in the meanwhile because we cannot plant now, you cannot pull wood now and after now we gatto restart so we want grant to like restart and buy we lil thing or to do some lil business in the meantime to survive” Dejonge added.
Residents in the area are not hopeful of their life returning to normalcy anytime soon given the ongoing rainfall being experienced across the country.
Meanwhile, only last week over $5M was distributed to households in the area to cushion the impact of the high cost of living. The grant which saw individual households receiving a one-off $25,000 cash grant was announced by President Irfaan Ali in May.