Photo by amanderson2 on Flickr. Georgetown coastline with sea wall seen from the air.

Nearly two years after the last budget was passed in the National Assembly, the new Government will be picking up the slack from the former administration to invest into strengthening the country’s sea defenses that are in dire need of repair. This was revealed by Minister within the Ministry of Public Works, Hon. Deodat Indar.

Speaking about ongoing emergency repairs at the Dantzig foreshore in Mahaicony,Around where the sluice door at Market Street, Grove, broke on August 20th, 2020, which resulted in local flooding,

Minister Indar said,“in the next four months with the budget we are going to put forward, we have allocated money to do some of the more priority areas.”

This new budgetary allocation will be added onto the $168Million contract that was recently awarded to M&B Construction to execute emergency works along the Mahaicony earthen embankment where there are critical breaches.

The Minister said the Government will prioritize sealing the breaches since the effects of saltwater on agricultural lands means that farmers lose crops and jobs.

Upon assuming office, Minister of Public Works Hon. Bishop Juan Edghill and Minister Indar visited the Mahaicony foreshore to get a first hand view of the damage caused by the incoming tide.

The Sea Wall is a 280-mile seawall that runs along much of Guyana‘s coastline, and all of the coastline in the capital city of Georgetown (such as Shell Beach). It protects settlements in the coastal areas of Guyana, most of which are below sea level at high tide.

Construction of the Sea Wall began in 1855 after a flood in February of that year inundated the Kingston ward of Georgetown and washed away Camp House (the former residence for governors of the colony).

The first section, which ran from Fort Groyne to Round House was completed by 1860. In 1874, the Public Works department of British Guiana committed to the construction of a continuous wall from Camp Street to Kitty. By 1882, the Sea Wall had been extended to reach as far as Unity Village.