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NIA fast-tracks irrigation development in Mindanao

April 21, 2024 Joel dela Torre 86 views

THE National Irrigation Administration (NIA) has vowed to fast-track irrigation development in Mindanao amidst the highly-felt El Nino phenomenon.

Guided by the battlecry of President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. to achieve national progress, administrator Eduardo Guillen said that NIA will remain steadfast in providing sustainable irrigation service to the Filipino farmers, especially in Mindanao.

This far, the agency successfully implemented the P5.133-billion MMIP-II located in Bgy.Villarica, Midsayap, North Cotabato, which has 4,043 farmer-beneficiaries.

As of March 2024, the project recorded an overall weighted physical accomplishment (OWPA) of 99.56% as reported after a series of test runs on the completed canal structures in the Lower Malitubog Service Area conducted on March 18, 2024.

With water source from the Maridagao River, MMIP-II covers 9,528 hectares of agricultural land in the municipality of Aleosan, North Cotabato, and the towns of Pangalungan and Datu Montawal in Maguindanao del Sur under the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM).

Administrator Guillen has advocated bayanihan and personally talked to the residents about the positive impacts of MMIP-II completion in their livelihood.

He met with the IA presidents and members and highlighted the importance of IAs’ support and cooperation towards the realization of the project.

The installation of solar sump pumps along the dike is eyed to provide irrigation to the dried-up areas with a convertible facility for proper water management and agricultural production.

Guillen said that once proven effective, it will be replicated in the fertile agricultural areas within Liguasan Marsh that will ultimately transform the said area into an economic zone of Southern Mindanao.

This project also intends to achieve and sustain peace and order in the region through social and agricultural development.

To further develop the irrigated agriculture in Mindanao, NIA targets to implement another P2.1-billion worth of irrigation project in the Lower Malitubog area, with a service area of 800 hectares.

Guillen has included in his directives to prioritize, intensify, and accelerate the implementation of development initiatives, such as irrigation facilities for the improvement of BARMM.