Land Dispute Resolution Committee to address MMA land issues

A Land Dispute Resolution Sub-committee is now in lace to address issues related to land within Mahaica/Mahaicony/Abary-Agriculture Development Authority.

The Sub-committee is being headed by retired Justice Cecil Kennard and comprises former CEO of the Guyana Lands and Surveys Commission (GL&SC), Mr. Andrew Bishop and GL&SC’s official, Ms. Jewel Cheong.

Agriculture Minister Zulfikar Mustapha who met with the committee spoke of “several pressing land disputes” that need review.

“There are a number of legal issues pending there and there are a number of issues with land distribution.  There are hundreds of acres of land that were leased to people who are residing overseas. In turn, they are renting it to small farmers who are forced to pay double or triple the cost of the lease fee in rent,” the Minister is quoted as saying in a release

This sub-committee would be mandated to look at the disputes between the farmers and provide timely proposals the Ministry of Agriculture said.

“We are looking to double rice production over the next five years. Last year, we produced 1.2 million metric tonnes of paddy. In five years, we hope to produce 2.4 million metric tonnes,” the Minister said, “That means we have to open more land, and bring these lands under cultivation. This also means we’ll have to settle land disputes in areas that have already been developed.”

Draft Terms of Reference are to be created and would guide the committees work.