JIS News

The Manchester Parish Council is seeking to have mined out bauxite lands brought back into agricultural production.
On a recent tour of mined out areas in the parish by the Mayor of Mandeville, Councillor Brenda Ramsay, other Council members and officials from Alumina Partners of Jamaica (ALPART), the Mayor told JIS News that, “we want to come to an arrangement for post mining operations, and we are exploring the idea of using these lands for water catchment to ease the water problem for people, and for these areas to be put back into agriculture, green house farming and other types of farming.”
“ALPART has been very open to our ideas and we will be talking with them further to conclude an agreement for the use of these lands,” Mrs. Ramsay added.
Chairman of the Council’s Agricultural Committee, Anthony Bryce, said they are putting themselves in a position to give advice on the types of crops that could be grown.
“A great number of the farmers were dislocated when they made way for mining in the area, so we are seeking to put them back into farming. We want to plant trees in the area, and do a number of crops that are in demand. Very soon we will be inviting the relevant agencies to come and work out the way forward in getting the lands into full agriculture,” Mr. Bryce said.
Meanwhile, Minister of Agriculture, Dr. Christopher Tufton, told a recent Farmers’ Forum in the parish, that he has held discussions with the Jamaica Bauxite Institute (JBI), to identify mined out lands that are available for agriculture.
“The bauxite companies have a programme where they provide support for farmers. These lands, when restored, will be fit for greenhouse farming and the companies are willing to assist in having the lands used for agriculture. As a Government, we have to promote this,” the Minister said.