เครือข่ายเกษตรกรรมทางเลือกภาคอีสาน

Political and Ecological Crisis in Kudchum

In Uncategorized on 18/10/2009 at 4:05 pm

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Political and Ecological Crisis in Kudchum District, Yasothon Province

Yasothon, Thailand, 18 October 2009 (AAN) – There is currently 41 tons of Furadan (Carbofuran) sitting in the Kudchum district agriculture office storage silo.  Local government officials claim that farmers are demanding the free distribution of Furadan and have enlisted village headmen to sign up local rice and cassava farmers to immediately receive Furadan and other chemicals, in order to address what they are calling a “natural disaster” created by plant disease in both crops. This is a blatant failure of responsibility to protect the health and security of farmers, consumers and the environment. The agriculture office claims that farmers have been demanding chemicals since August, but in reality the project has just been written on Oct. 16.

Furdadan is a systemic insecticide that has one of the highest acute toxicities of all agro-chemicals.  It has known impacts on the natural environment and human health, and is currently banned in the United States.

Yasothon province has committed to an “Organic Agriculture Province” for a number of years.  Bunsong Mathkao, president of the AAN – Esan, who has long worked with the provincial government on developing organic agriculture policies, simply asks, “Why is the government doing this?  The MPs are just finding a reason to use their budget and find a place to use these chemicals. Kudchum is the only district to accept this project, other districts won’t accept it.”

The AAN – Esan recognizes that this “demand” on behalf of rice and cassava farmers in Kudchum is just an excuse for local politicians to misallocate funds intended to support local farmers.  This situation represents a political system imbedded with corruption and agro-chemical interests.  The mass distribution and use of dangerous chemicals like Furadan is also a blatant violation of farmers’ rights to a safe and healthy environment.

Tomorrow, the AAN and Love Nature Club will pursue this crisis with the Governor of Yasothon in negotiations to develop a solution for Kudchum district.  We maintain our demands that Yasothon province prohibit the use of these dangerous agro-chemicals, especially Furadan, and genuinely support sustainable agriculture policies.

The Alternative Agriculture Network – Esan (AAN) monitors agricultural and trade policies in order to support and defend the rights of small-scale farmers. The AAN is a network of more than 3,000 farming families that works to develop appropriate and sustainable alternatives for community food security.

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Contact:

Bennett Haynes

Alternative Agriculture Network – Esan

bennett.haynes@gmail.com

(+66) 0867941588

aanesan.wordpress.com

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  1. […] The mess of provincial bureaucrats sitting across the hall is a symbol of their ineptitude and the dearth of political will within the system.  They have made a major mess for themselves and they look nervous and embarrassed.  This is an unbalanced and contradictory political system. The district has had to accept it’s at fault and the higher ups have had to come in and clean up this mess… […]

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