A $146,964 drainage project in the flood prone Koronivia Road in Rewa will provide relief to the 6,400 residents of the area who, during flash floods, had to use fibreglass boats to travel.

This after Minister for Waterways, Dr Mahendra Reddy, commissioned the seventh drainage and flood mitigation project around the country in two months in Koronivia this evening.

“We are mindful of the challenges that communities such as yours face due the impact of climate change which has brought about more severe flooding and affects small island countries like ours,” Minister Reddy said.

“The Prime Minister has also taken a strong stance on this at both global and local level, a separate Ministry has been created to address the impact and there are other agencies like the Ministry of Education that through its curriculum teaching about climate change and mitigation,”Reddy said.

He urged the Koronivia community, which had gathered for the commissioning and talanoa session, to look after the infrastructure and amenities provided by the Government as it was put in place to serve their community.

Permanent Secretary in the Office of the Prime Minister and the Ministry of Waterways, Yogesh Karan said in the past communities like Koronivia had a lot of issues but did not know who to go to with their complaints.

“Now with the Ministry of Waterways, they know where they can go to in regards to water issues such as drainage, culverts and newly constructed crossings. We are also getting good ideas and suggestions from the public,” Karan said.

Residents in the area, many of who depend on agriculture for their livelihood have welcomed the move as well as the increase the Ministry received in the 2018/2019 National Budget with an allocation of $69.9 million to mostly carry out drainage and irrigation works.

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