Magelang, Central Java (ANTARA) - The Central Java provincial government has started collecting data on agricultural areas affected by the recent eruption of Mount Merapi in the districts of Magelang, Klaten, and Boyolali.

"Of course, we are paying attention to lands that have been affected by yesterday's Merapi eruption. We will collect data again and immediately evaluate what needs to be aided by the government," Central Java Deputy Governor Taj Yasin Maimoen said during a working visit here on Thursday.

The Central Java provincial government is currently at the stage of coordinating with the governments of Magelang and Klaten Districts regarding the data collection and identification of damage caused by the eruption.

"Based on the data, we then will be able to determine the assistance that will be given to farmers whose lands have been affected by the Merapi eruption," Maimoen said.

As per data from the Agriculture and Food Office of Magelang District, 1,661.8 hectares of agricultural land in the district has been affected by volcanic ash.

Of the 1,661.8 hectares of land, 1,185 hectares are in Sawangan Sub-district and 476 hectares in Dukun Sub-district. The types of commodities grown on those lands include chilies, tomatoes, cabbage, coffee, and mustard greens.

"Regarding the loss, inshallah (if God willing), we from the government will help. Not only from the government, we will also invite companies in Central Java and the community to lessen the burden (on those living) around Mount Merapi," he said.

Head of the Agriculture and Food Office of Magelang District Romza Ernawan, when contacted by phone, said that the Agriculture Office of Central Java has communicated with his office regarding the damage to agricultural lands.

According to Ernawan, the handling of volcanic ash that has blanketed agricultural lands is currently underway.

He further said that a massive cleaning of 35 hectares of chili farming lands would be carried out jointly by up to 200 people on March 17, 2023.

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Translator: Wisnu Adhi, Raka Adji
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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