Government to Aid Veld Fire Victims

Government to Aid Veld Fire Victims

14 October 2010

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South Africa —  The Free State farming community is to receive much-needed relief after being severely affected by wild veld fires.

More than 410 000 hectares of farm land in the province has been razed since June – the highest in recent years. While the major fires are under control, minor fires which do not pose much of a threat are still breaking out.

“The provincial government has availed funding to the tune of R5 million to assist those communities affected by the wild fires,” said Mafa Mokoaqo, manager of farming information risk and disaster management at the provincial Department of Agriculture.

He said logistics were yet to be discussed on how best the funds will be used.

The department has already begun providing some assistance to the Ventersburg community by providing the farmers with fire fighting equipment and information on how best to handle hazardous situations.

Mokoaqo said it was not yet clear how much damage had been caused by the fires as assessments were still in progress.

He, however, urged farmers to join fire prevention associations, as such organisations raise awareness when disaster strikes and help combat fires to avoid them raging out of control.

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