Poultry farmer cries ‘foul’ after DCA serves him with eviction notice from land assigned by Ministry of Agriculture

Jeffrey Jones, the farmer who was given an Enforcement Notice from
the Development Control Authority (DCA) to vacate his farm within
28 days, is trying to meet with Ministry of Agriculture officials on
this situation, which he describes as a disaster.
On Tuesday, February 6, Jones, a member of the Antigua and
Barbuda Layer Farmers Association and a senior farmer of more
than 17 years, met the compliance notice stuck to a vehicle on his
Burkes Estate, All Saints, farm.
He says that he received the 2.5 acres of land from the Ministry of
Agriculture 17 years ago, after he was moved from a location in
Freemans Village when a church was constructed nearby.
Jones says that when he got the land it was overrun with acacia
trees, which he spent about $12,000 to clear, and he expended
additional monies to have an excavator brought to the location to
carry out the work.
Further, he says, he spent quite a large sum digging a pond so that
his crops would have a constant supply of water.
Jones says the DCA notice advised him that he is on private property
and must vacate by the deadline.
Now, because he did not obtain the land from the DCA but through
the Ministry of Agriculture, he is seeking an audience with the
relevant agriculture officials to see what his options are.
He says that he renews his lease for the land annually and is
confused about what is now taking place.

Jones, who is originally from Guyana, has over 500 fruit trees on the
land and runs a poultry farm, as well.

According to Jones, he is at a loss to understand how the Browne
Administration could be promoting farming while destroying the
sector at the same time.

That was Jeffrey Jones, a local farmer facing displacement.

No alternative provisions for his relocation are being offered by the
DCA, as was the case 17 years ago when he was moved to Burkes by
the Ministry of Agriculture.
Jones says he is distraught that, having invested millions of dollars
into his farm, he is being asked to give up his livelihood and the
means by which he takes care of his family.
The farmer says that these past few months have been trying times
for him, but this situation is the worst ever.
He says that he lost close to 2,000 chickens on a farm he was renting
in the Lightfoot area due to the pond overflowing and flooding the
location, killing all his chickens.