Rice and cattle farmer Dhansham Ramnarine has resided on the Essequibo Island of Leguan all 57 years of his life. He feels the respectability afforded him in his community, coupled with his several acts of philanthropy in giving a helping hand to those in need are qualities that make him a good leader.PPP/C Blenheim-Enterprise LGE Constituency Candidate, Dhansham Ramnarine In the Local Government elections (LGE) slated for November 12, Ramnarine is contesting in the Leguan Neighbourhood Democratic Council (NDC) of Constituency 9 (Blenheim-Enterprise) for the People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C). He told Guyana Times that during the last LGE, in March 2016, he was a candidate on the Proportional Representation (PR) list. Asked about his suitability as a candidate for this year’s LGE, Ramnarine related that since he is a rice and cattle farmer in the area, he understands the needs of his fellow farmers. He noted that he has been urging them to forge more collaboration, due to some of the shortfalls that exist with availability of equipment and other resources.“The community has lots of needs for development, especially rice farmers. Right now me deh in the backdam. We got a dam here that needs lots of earth, because in the rainy season it would be very bad. Many farmers who are tractor owners does look pun one another, but me does talk to them and tell them, ‘You can’t do that, all of you ah farmers together, y’all must cooperate’,” Ramnarine told this newspaper via mobile phone call.He said the NDC has only one “pull tractor,” and would sometimes request the use of farmers’ equipment. Though this may not be the most favourable situation, the PPP/C candidate noted that farmers must work together.Speaking on drainage in the community, Ramnarine said some 10 or 11 workers are employed to clean the residential areas. Nevertheless, there is need for improved cleaning of major canals, especially since this is the dry season.He explained that although rainfall has been reduced, flooding still occurs in some residential areas, since water for irrigation purposes is allowed to flow from the Essequibo River into canals so it can be stored for use when water sources become depleted.“In Blenheim, the koker [does not flow] straight to the canal. It got a turn, and the residential areas does flood. But you got a culvert, but it [isn’t] locked properly, and the people in Blenheim livestock gets affected because it’s a low place. This is when the koker [is opened] to carry water to the backlands,” he said.Further highlighting knowledge of his constituency, the farmer explained that a Guyana Rice Development Board (GRDB) operative would test the water for salt content before it is allowed to flow into the farmlands.When Guyana Times questioned the candidate about the possibility of establishing a reservoir akin to the conservancy system, he noted that this was attempted before, but some residents objected.“They wanted to dig a canal from east to west to store water, but residents complained that you would divide the island, so it’s off the table,” he noted.Going forward, the candidate stressed that farmers would continue to be assisted with weeding and the use of equipment which they do not have.Ramnarine, a father of three and grandfather of four, told this newspaper that the fact that he assists those in need is an additional feature of his suitability as a candidate.“I am a respectable person, you know. I don’t smoke or drink alcohol, and I don’t get involved and quarrel with people. They got a man who estate (farmlands) I running; he got in accident since March this year. He fall down on the road and he got fractured. This man got over 200 acres in rice,” Ramnarine stated.“The people them got confidence in me. We won on the island at the last elections,” he expressed.