Several residents of Smythfield, New Amsterdam and Caracas Village, West Canje, Berbice, are being affected by flooding due to a collapsed revetment at the Canje River.
Residents have noted that current high tides have also added to the flooding. Several said yesterday that this is the first time their villages have experienced such severe flooding. They said that a revetment, which was keeping out the water, caved in some months ago. They also complained that the water carries a stench and affects their health and that of their children. According to the residents, their crops and cattle are also affected by the salt water.
When contacted, Regional Chairman David Armogan told Stabroek News that the situation was one which officials had foreseen and a contract worth some $5 million was awarded to build a revetment in the area. The chairman stressed that the contractor would now have to get the work done at a fast rate in order to ease the residents’ plight.
“There was a revetment which was done some years ago and that revetment has caved in and as result there is no prevention to stop the water from coming in to the land, so now we have to go back and do the revetment once again,” he said. The Chairman noted that a contract was also awarded to raise the height of the dam in the area.
Armogan said that work is being done on a koker adjacent to the area where they are experiencing some issues. “People have been complaining that the contractor there is utilising the mud and they would have preferred if he used the mud to build the dam but that’s not part of his contract,” he said.
According to the Chairman, for years whenever there is a high tide, the water overflows into nearby villages. “When the water becomes so high, it spills over into the line and this has been happening all over,” he said. He noted that he is aware that the water is very salty and affects the crops in the area “and that’s why we need to immediately do some work there to make sure that we can prevent the crops from being destroyed.”