Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Banteay Meanchey farmers call for water shortage help

Banteay Meanchey farmers call for water shortage help

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Banteay Meanchey provincial officials inspect a drought-affected area in Mongkol Borei district on June 5. BANTEAY MEANCHEY ADMINISTRATION

Banteay Meanchey farmers call for water shortage help

Farmers and local authorities in Soea commune of Banteay Meanchey province’s Mongkul Borei district have called for assistance to pump water into nearly 2,000ha of paddy fields facing a shortage.

Commune chief Chea Ty told The Post that around 1,700ha of early-season rice fields in his commune are facing water shortages due to the closure of a main irrigation channel in neighbouring Battambang province.

The O’Sandan channel in Battambang’s Prey Khpos commune, in Bavel district, is under repair after being damaged by floods last year.

“As planned, the repairs will be completed in the next two months. But almost 2,000ha of rice fields in Soea commune are at risk of being damaged due to water shortages in that time if the flow from the main channel to our farmlands continues to be blocked. Our farmlands are in hilly areas and therefore at high risk of water shortages,” Ty said.

According to Ty, farmers have recently submitted requests to the commune administration for assistance from the Banteay Meanchey provincial Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries and the Department of Water Resources and Meteorology.

The requests call for water to be pumped from natural streams and lakes into the main channel for farmers to use to irrigate their rice fields, and for the reconstruction of the O’Sandan irrigation channel to be completed as planned.

Lay Puthy, deputy director of the Banteay Meanchey provincial water resources department, said a working group had employed four 65-horsepower pumps to get water into the main channel.

He called on farmers to follow official instructions on rice cultivation during the rainy season.

According to Puthy, the farmers of both hilly and lowland rice fields have failed to follow instructions by opening up the banks around their paddies to drain water, regardless of the result, leading to higher farmland facing water shortages.

“Our experts are already intervening to pump water to save their rice, but we want them to follow our instructions as well.

“To ensure rice does not get damaged, those who have rice fields on hills need to know how to store water, while those with lowland fields should pump water out of their farmland,” he said.

Pang Vannaseth, director of the Banteay Meanchey provincial agriculture department, said no early-rainy season rice in any part in the province had so far been damaged by water shortages due to consistent downpours almost everywhere, even at lower levels.

However, more than 2,000ha of paddy fields have been damaged by flooding due to excessive rainfall in three communes of Banteay Meanchey’s Mongkul Borei district – Chamnaom, Prasat and Rohat Tuek – since the beginning of rainy season.

MOST VIEWED

  • Hong Kong firm done buying Coke Cambodia

    Swire Coca-Cola Ltd, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Hong Kong-listed Swire Pacific Ltd, on November 25 announced that it had completed the acquisition of The Coca-Cola Co’s bottling business in Cambodia, as part of its ambitions to expand into the Southeast Asian market. Swire Coca-Cola affirmed

  • Cambodia's Bokator now officially in World Heritage List

    UNESCO has officially inscribed Cambodia’s “Kun Lbokator”, commonly known as Bokator, on the World Heritage List, according to Minister of Culture and Fine Arts Phoeurng Sackona in her brief report to Prime Minister Hun Sen on the night of November 29. Her report, which was

  • NagaWorld union leader arrested at airport after Australia trip

    Chhim Sithar, head of the Labour Rights Supported Union of Khmer Employees at NagaWorld integrated casino resort, was arrested on November 26 at Phnom Penh International Airport and placed in pre-trial detention after returning from a 12-day trip to Australia. Phnom Penh Municipal Court Investigating Judge

  • Sub-Decree approves $30M for mine clearance

    The Cambodian government established the ‘Mine-Free Cambodia 2025 Foundation’, and released an initial budget of $30 million. Based on the progress of the foundation in 2023, 2024 and 2025, more funds will be added from the national budget and other sources. In a sub-decree signed by Prime Minister Hun Sen

  • Two senior GDP officials defect to CPP

    Two senior officials of the Grassroots Democratic Party (GDP) have asked to join the Cambodian People’s Party (CPP), after apparently failing to forge a political alliance in the run-up to the 2023 general election. Yang Saing Koma, chairman of the GDP board, and Lek Sothear,

  • Cambodia's poverty cut in half from 2009 to 2019: World Bank report

    A report published by the World Bank on November 28 states that Cambodia’s national poverty rate fell by almost half between 2009 and 2019, but the Covid-19 pandemic recently reversed some of the poverty reduction progress. Cambodia’s poverty rate dropped from 33.8 to 17.8 per cent over the 10