Ministry looks to prosecute on contamination of water sources

Dr Mahendra Reddy and senior agriculture officers with goat and cattle farmer Shahgul at Vusu in Nadroga. Picture: SUPPLIED/FIJI GOVERNMENT

FIJI’S Minister for Agriculture Dr Mahendra Reddy is looking to prosecute those found to be contaminating water sources with the use of chemicals.

This issue was raised during his visit to Vusu in Nadroga yesterday, where a farmer Shahgul said nearby prawn fishers were using chemicals that affected livestock.

“We’ll have to start dealing with people who are contaminating our waterways and for that, we will have to undertake the testing of water samples to demonstrate that it is contaminated and we’ll have to catch people and have evidence that they have contaminated it,” Dr Reddy said.

“The other issue of them contaminating water that is consumed by the animals and they lose the stock – that will have to be dealt with in a number of ways; tell people not to trespass on property and second, if they do it upstream, it again causes a problem so we’ll have to start charging them for trespassing and also, we’ll have to start charging them separately for contaminating water by use of chemicals.”

Dr Reddy said the ministry also planned to set up traps in Vusu to curb the prevalence of stray dogs that were wreaking havoc on livestock.

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