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Bad weather and drainage problems affects widow's cane farm

Felix Chaudhary
Tuesday, August 12, 2014

SARAS Wati says every time it rains, she loses sugarcane from her 10 acre farm in Tawatawa, Saru, on the outskirts of Lautoka City.

"Drainage is a big problem for people in our area and especially for me," the 55-year-old widow said.

After her husband passed away in 2012, Mrs Wati said she went through a lot of difficulties including labour and drainage problems.

She is assisted by her son, Saras Chand.

"We have lost about 10 tonnes of cane because of poor drainage," she said.

"Every time there is heavy rain, the water comes quickly down the drain and sweeps away cane that is planted near the side of the drain."

Lautoka Cane Producers Association executive manager Arvin Singh said canegrowers with drainage problems should contact the organisation for assistance.

"We have a drainage assistance scheme but we need the area surveyed before we can resolve the issue," he said.

Sugar Cane Growers Council CEO Sundresh Chetty said drainage issues came under the auspices of the Western Drainage Board.

"However, not all areas fall under the board's drainage scheme.

"Their work is confined to the main drains, in-field drains remain the responsibility of farmers."

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