Philippines — Mayor Ma. Isabelle Climaco-Salazar has ordered the Office of the City Agriculture to expedite measures to help the farmers affected by the long dry spell.
Salazars order came after the damage to crops and fisher products caused by the continuing dry spell and prevalent bushfires have surge to 8,743.9 hectares with an estimated value at Php129.44 million as of March 24.
Salazar has also expressed concern that the continuing dry spell, which has led to water and power shortages, should be immediately addressed.
One of the measures being looked into by the city government along with the Zamboanga City Water District and the Department of Agriculture is the conduct of cloud seeding operations to induce artificial rains in this city.
City Agriculturist Diosdado Palacat said the bushfires due to unsupervised outdoor burning and slash and burn activities have led to increased devastation of agricultural lands planted with banana, cassava, mango and rubber and coconut.
Palacat earlier reported that rice fields and corn fields including lands planted with assorted vegetables as well as fishponds have been ruined due to the long dry spell.
These affected areas are spread out in the six agricultural districtsTumaga, Ayala, Culianan, Manicahan, Curuan and Vitaliof this city.
Palacat said that 1,389.8 of the total 8,743.9 hectares damaged are with no chance of recovery.