NIA to turnover communal irrigation system in Ibajay
by Venus G. Villanueva
Linabuan Sur, Banga, Aklan (19 February) -- A community irrigation system seen to benefit 285 farmers planting an irrigable area of 220 hectares is set to be turned over by the National Irrigation Administration (NIA) to the local government of Ibajay.
According to Engr. Rizalo Concepcion, NIA-Aklan Division Manager A, the San Jose Communal Irrigation System in Ibajay, Aklan will be turned over on February 22 to LGU-Ibajay through a ribbon cutting and blessing, followed by a short program at Sitio Mangga, Naile, Ibajay, Aklan.
NIA said the project costs P11 million, sourced from the P6 B allocation (repair and rehabilitation of existing communal irrigation system in the Luzon Urban Beltway and Central Philippines) through the request of Aklan Rep. Florencio T. Miraflores.
Farmers from the barangays of Naile, San Jose, Naligusan and Rizal, all in the municipality of Ibajay, will benefit from the irrigation system.
The turnover of the irrigation system is also seen to mitigate the effects of El Niņo in the farming communities of Ibajay.
Aklan has been classified by the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA), along with neighboring province of Antique, to be moderately affected by El Niņo while other Western Visayas provinces like Iloilo, Capiz and Negros Occidental are "highly-vulnerable areas".
Presently, NIA-Aklan is conducting river channeling so irrigation water can rise and enter canals leading to ricefields. Channeling is essential, according to NIA, as the river bed has gone very low, preventing water to enter irrigation canals.
The El Niņo Phenomenon is seen to peak in the months of March and April, with agricultural loses around the country now reaching billions. (PIA) [top]