The Kano State Agro Pastoral Development Project (KSADP) has approved a contract worth over N314 million to renovate the Watari Irrigation Scheme, a move to transform agricultural practices and improve food production in the state.
Mallam Ibrahim Garba Muhammad , the project coordinator for the state, explained at the official conferral of the project to contractor Hajaig Nigeria Limited that the scope of work included restoration of the dam’s embankment following gully erosion, as well as repair and desilting of the main canals, drainages and night storage reservoir.
The irrigation scheme is situated downstream of the Watari Dam located in the Bagwai Local Government Area of Kano State. It was constructed between 1977 and 1980 as the third largest dam in the state, with a total storage capacity of 104 million cubic meters.
Despite the dam’s ongoing use in farm irrigation and flood control and its huge potential for agricultural and rural development, it has not undergone any repairs since it was built more than 40 years ago.
Muhammad appealed to farmers and other stakeholders in the area to cooperate with the contractor to ensure the project’s speedy completion.
“I want to inform you that the KSADP is being funded and supported with grants by the Islamic Development Bank and the Lives and Livelihoods Fund (LLF) to improve crop production and enhance livestock productivity, and this project is one of the main activities we are going to conduct to achieve our goals.”
“Besides the renovation of the dam, whose embankment has been eroded and its canals blocked, our project intends to create additional 1,000 hectares of irrigation land, meaning more people in this locality would be engaged in farming,” he shared.
Kasem Hajaig, a representative speaking on behalf of the contractor, pledged that the work will be completed within three months as stated in the contract.