Inspection to the Food Estate on 23 February 2021, in Makata Keri, Katiku Tana, Central Sumba Tengah Regency, East Nusa Tenggara Province
Today I am on a working visit to see the food estate in Central Sumba, Central Sumba Regency, East Nusa Tenggara Province.
Indeed, here, in Central Sumba Regency, currently we have prepared 5,000 hectares only, 3,000 of which are planted with rice, then the other 2,000 (hectares) are planted with corn. But in the future, it will be expanded to an area of 10,000 hectares, which will be divided; 5,600 hectares for rice and 4,400 hectares for corn.
Why is it carried out in East Nusa Tenggara, particularly in Central Sumba Regency? Because, indeed, we have to speak bluntly, Mr. Regent (and) Mr. Governor. The data I have, 34 percent of poverty is found here. And, the harvest in Central Sumba happens only once a year, namely rice harvest. And we want to manage so that there can be two rice harvests a year and one corn or soybean harvest a year.
The problem is the same in all of East Nusa Tenggara, water problem. Indeed, the key is water. Therefore, here we see there are drilled wells built in 2015-2018 irrigating rice fields, there are also retention basins. Some retention basins here, large retention basins have also been constructed, but they are still far from enough. Still insufficient.
Mr. Regent just asked for more. Mr. Governor also asked to have a dam made in Central Sumba Regency and its surrounding area. I have ordered the Minister of Public Works and Public Housing to study the probability to build a dam and additional retention basins and drilled wells.
Later followed by the Ministry of Agriculture to assist with the lack of agricultural machinery. Tractors, especially, are indispensable.
I think, if we work on it, I believe that with the food estate in Central Kalimantan, the food estate in North Sumatra, and the food estate in East Nusa Tenggara, we will be able to develop a good food security for our country. And later, we will replicate it in other provinces that are prepared.
I think that concludes my speech on this auspicious occasion. Thank you. (DH/MMB)