ALOR SETAR: The Muda Agricultural Development Authority (MADA) has activated the Muda Area Flood Preparedness Plan to deal with the ‘La Nina’ weather phenomenon that is expected at the end of this year.

Its chairman Ahmad Tarmizi Sulaiman said MADA will manage excess water due to rainfall in accordance with standard operating procedures set in the interest of the public and rice farming in the area.

“Forecasts show that from September 2022 to February 2023, Perlis will receive an average rainfall of between 200 to 300 millimetres (mm) and in Kedah, 290 to 440mm.

“Based on this, the Muda area is likely to receive heavy rainfall in the dam catchment area, river catchment area and padi growing areas which will cause water levels and river flow to increase,” he said in a statement today.

He said MADA will ensure irrigation and drainage infrastructures are functioning well and also related assets such as boats, pumps and other equipment and machinery are in good condition.

“MADA is always aware of current weather changes and is in a state of readiness in the event of floods as forecast by the Meteorological Department of Malaysia (MetMalaysia) and the Department of Irrigation and Drainage.

He said foodwater drainage operations will be through the main infrastructures involving the Arau System, Lanabulu System, Alor Changileh System, Pelubang Barrage and Ampang Jajar dam.

Ahmad Tarmizi said with these plans and preparations, it is hoped that damage and inconvenience to public property, rice growing areas and their farmers can be minimised if flooding occurs in the Muda area.

“To date, water catchment level at the Pedu Dam is at 859,625 million cubic metres (98.27 per cent), Muda dam at 123,950 million cubic metres (99.16 per cent) and the Ahning dam at 186,979 million cubic metres (83.85 per cent).

“Farmers in the MADA area are encouraged to contact their nearby Area Farmers’ Organisation (PPK) if they have any questions or complaints. MADA is always ready to help to make rice growing activities in the Muda area a success,” he said.-Bernama