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Zombo Leaders rally farmers to adopt small-scale irrigation

Zombo District leaders have rallied small-scale farmers in Alangi, Zeu, Kango and Paidha subcounties to adopt the drip and sprinkler micro-scale irrigation schemes in line with the Presidential initiative for Best practices of agriculture and as an adaptive measure to protect and save the environment.

Mr Oyullu James, the LC5 chairperson Zombo District demonstrating the sprinkler irrigation at a garden in Alangi (Photo/Hillary Alithum)

ZOMBO, UGANDA: Zombo District leaders have rallied small-scale farmers in Alangi, Zeu, Kango and Paidha subcounties to adopt the drip and sprinkler micro-scale irrigation schemes in line with the Presidential initiative for Best practices of agriculture and as an adaptive measure to protect and save the environment.

The Parliamentary Committee on Climate Change and Natural Resources lobbied for 36 irrigation schemes with two being implemented in Ongudu and Asanda in Zeu subcounty and the communities where the irrigation schemes are being and to be implemented, are required to have at least 20 acres of land in order to sustainably make use of the project.

The leaders have cited inadequate sensitization of communities on how to utilize the irrigation schemes as many of the beneficiary farmers still wait for the rainy seasons so that they can plant crops and above all wait for agricultural inputs such as agrochemicals and seeds from the government.

During the monitoring of the sprinkler irrigation demonstration site in Alangi sub-county, Zombo District LC5 Chairperson, Mr Oyullu James Oruna told DailyExpress that farmers can best benefit from the irrigation schemes by watering the crops during dry seasons and continue to plant normally increasing the agricultural productivity at the most generation of money for the farmers.

“The third component is horse pipe usage, where you can tap water depending on the distance and supply to the farthest garden but that requires farmers or communities to buy long horse pipes and connect ” said Oyullu.

In a related discussion, Hon Biyika Lawrence Songa, the former Deputy chairperson of the Parliamentary Committee on Climate Change and Natural Resources said during his tenure, 36 small-scale irrigation schemes were built across Uganda with two schemes in the Zombo district at Ongudu and Asanda Zeu subcounty.

Mr Biyika added that the management of the schemes is very poor because beneficiary farmers expect the government to provide them with agricultural inputs such as chemicals cheap as 5000/=.

“It’s now your crops, what government helped you with, is you should have constant water for irrigation throughout the year and the government will continue providing technical support,” Biyika said in a separate interview with DailyExpress.

Zombo district is an ideal ground for the implementation of Small Gravity irrigation schemes given the availability of water streams and the hilly nature of the landscape.

Most streams within the district qualify for the indication of stream irrigation capacity of 1 l/s/ha or 0.4l/s/acre depending on the purpose of the irrigation whether to overcome dry spells during the rainy seasons or crop production during dry season and continual sensitization of communities on the advantages of Irrigation using local available resources.

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