The Principal Secretary for Arid and Semi-Arid Lands (ASAL) Mr. Idris Dakota has announced government plans to revive the Gamba rice project.
He said revival exercise has begun in the Tana Delta Irrigation project which stalled over 10 years ago with a view to begin the mass production of rice.
The PS said the Authorities have rehabilitated primary and secondary canals providing water to the paddy fields and preparations are going on in 100 acres to begin rice production.
Tana delta irrigation project has a capacity of producing 12,000 ha of rice and hundreds of farmers within the Tana delta will get employment and economic benefits once the project kicks off.
Dakota toured the project over the weekend to inspect the progress and was taken to Kitere at the main intake, the rubber dam, and at the farm where clearance is going on for rice production to begin.
He was accompanied by the TARDA Managing Director Liban Roba Duba adding that they would use an integrated approach by engaging local communities in the project to do rice farming.
Dakota said the focus was to improve on the mechanization and develop the irrigation infrastructure to improve the livelihoods of the community.
Communities members interviewed thanked the government for reviving the project and asked the authorities to speed up the process as it will create job opportunities and address the issue of food insecurity in the area.
Golo Abdala a resident of Bandi village in Tana delta said the project will not only benefit the area residents but also the whole country as it will bring together people from all walks of life with different expertise.
Abdalla said previously when the project was in operation life was really good as many people used to get income and educate their children but since it collapsed life has become difficult.
Osman Korir a resident of Hewani village said, “We have hope now after seeing the plans to revive the project as it will create job opportunities for youth”.
By Simon Guruba