News24

Flood damage worse than expected - Tau

2011-01-28 22:26

Bloemfontein - Flood damage to agricultural infrastructure and land caused by the recent heavy rains may be worse than expected, agricultural body TAU SA said on Friday.

TAU SA president Ben Marais said a preliminary survey among farmers in the flood stricken areas indicated that the estimated cost of direct damage to infrastructure was R1.82bn.

"However, this amount can be two or even three times higher than this."

He said that in a letter to the Minister of Agriculture Tina Joemat-Pettersson, TAU SA had indicated that only two days were given to do this survey.

Marais said the survey was far from complete but nevertheless data could be obtained from the Northern Cape, Gauteng, Mpumalanga and Free State.

TAU SA's survey also showed that rain damage was causing almost the same "catastrophic consequences" as the flooding.

"Rain damage is where there is no flooding but where land is drowning because of too much water," said Marais.

TAU SA asked Joemat-Pettersson to put together an emergency task team consisting of officials of her department and members of organised agriculture to investigate the damage to agricultural properly.