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Dry spell prompts pumping measures

Sen David / Khmer Times Share:
The Agriculture Minister meets with farmers. Yim Samnang

The Agricultural Minister on Saturday instructed provincial authorities to find a solution for persisting drought problems in Banteay Meanchey province.

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Agriculture Minister Veng Sakhon said during his visit to Phnom Srok district that while other villagers in the province are facing floods, major parts of the district are facing drought.

Mr Sakhon told local authorities to utilise water pumps to save rice paddies in the district as a temporary measure while a permanent solution is being worked on.

“The experts are looking for a water source for the pump so that villagers can save their rice paddy,” he said.

The provincial agricultural department said 5,469 hectares of land have been affected by the drought, while about 8,000 have been affected by floods.

Kim Savern, director of the Kampong Cham provincial agriculture department, said on Saturday that 6,000 hectares of rice paddy have been affected by floods alone.

“There are thousands of rice paddy and other crops affected by recent floods,” Mr Savern said.

Last week, Prime Minister Hun Sen ordered ministries tasked with mitigating damages caused by weather to continue assessing the damages and provide support to those affected.

Mr Hun Sen said at the time that vegetable and rice seeds should be provided, roads must be repaired and that medicine must be provided to victims.

The National Committee for Disaster Management said in a recent report that the provinces of Kratie, Stung Treng, Tboung Khmum, Kampong Cham, Prey Veng, Battambang and Kandal were hit by floods.

The NCDM said 18 people have died and thousands more have been displaced.

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