The Acting President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, GCON has flagged off the rehabilitation of 8,000 hectares and conversion/expansion of 5,560 hectares works of Bakolori irrigation scheme under the World Bank assisted Transforming Irrigation Management in Nigeria (TRIMING) project of the Federal Ministry of Water Resources.
Flagging off the project on Tuesday 18th July, 2017 in Talata Mafara, Zamfara State, the Ag. President represented by the Honourable Minister of Water Resources, Engr. Suleiman H. Adamu FNSE, said that the World Bank is investing a total sum of about $495 million through the TRIMING project to improve irrigation potential of the country.
He said that five basins of Dadin Kowa in Gombe, Hadejia Valley in Jigawa, Kano River in Kano, Middle Rima in Sokoto and Bakolori in Zamfara were selected for the pilot phase. He added that government hopes to replicate the scheme all over the country to boost the agricultural policy of food security of the present government.
TRIMING is converting the sprinkler component covering 5, 500 hectares and rehabilitation of gravity component covering 8,000 hectares that will provide a potential of about 13,500 hectares. This will improve large scale public irrigation in Northern Nigeria where it will make a contribution to agricultural production, growth and rural poverty reduction.
He called on Nigerians to take to agriculture in full commercial scale as it now accounts for over 40% of the GDP. The potential irrigable area in Nigeria is 21 million hectares, with over 1 million in the north while only 200,000 hectares are currently irrigated. Therefore, the irrigation transformation and development is very essential for sustained agricultural growth of the country.
Speaking at the occasion, the National Project Coordinator of TRIMING, Engr. Peter Manjuk, stated that the TRIMING Project is an intervention programme of the World Bank to transform the irrigation production in dry season farming in Nigeria. He said that the project has a 7-year life span to improve on the nation’s dams, integrate water resources management, develop the nation’s irrigation facilities and develop the entire agricultural facilities of the country thereby creating value for Nigerian farmers.
Manjuk, said that for the TRIMING Project to holistically address the issues of Nigeria irrigation project, cost recovery for irrigation and dams must be reviewed, provide adequate support services for profitable irrigating farming and provide strong budget and post-harvest support services for most farmers.