Commissioning Of The Kano River Irrigation Scheme, KRIS
SPEECH DELIVERED BY HIS EXCELLENCY, PROF. YEMI OSINBAJO, SAN, GCON, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA AT THE COMMISSIONING OF THE KANO RIVER IRRIGATION SCHEME IN KANO STATE ON THE 12TH OF MAY, 2023
I am delighted to be here at the official commissioning of the Kano River Irrigation Scheme which is a part of the Transforming Irrigation Management in Nigeria Project (TRIMING), an acclaimed success story of the Federal Government’s intervention in agriculture.
Today’s occasion is a milestone in the implementation of the Transforming Irrigation Management in Nigeria Project. This Project was conceived in 2012 as a product of the collaboration with development partners and eventually advanced into an implementable program in June 2014 when it was approved by the World Bank Board.
As part of our determination to address poverty and food insecurity, the Federal Government is implementing this project in collaboration with the International Development Association (IDA), the support of the World Bank in the sum of $495.30 million and counterpart funding from the Federal Government in the sum of $44 Million.
The objective of the Transforming Irrigation Management in Nigeria Project. (TRIMING) is essentially to enhance the productivity of 140,000 farmers within and near the following four rehabilitated irrigation schemes in Northern Nigeria: Bakolori Irrigation Scheme in Zamfara State, Middle Rima Irrigation Scheme in Sokoto State, Kano River Irrigation Scheme, and Hadejia Valley Irrigation Scheme in Jigawa State.
The project provides technical assistance for farmers at each irrigation scheme and facilitates strong forward and backward linkages along the value chains.
The Project is an innovative approach adopted by the Federal Government, which has opened access to life-changing opportunities for the farming communities that are involved with the Project.
The Project also serves as a vehicle to effectively harness the potential of vast water resources infrastructure, some of which were built well over 40 years ago but largely remained either unutilised or grossly underutilised.
The main beneficiaries of the Project include basin stakeholders, irrigation and drainage entities, water users’ associations, farmers, and rural dwellers in the Project areas. Through the direct infrastructure investments covering about 37,500 hectares across six States, concurrent activities in agriculture and on-farm water management in these areas, approximately 140,000 farm families with about 1 million people are directly benefiting.
Today’s event is a clear demonstration of the commitment of the Buhari Administration to transform the conditions of our people in the communities of our nation’s bread basket. In this case, by optimizing our water resources in ways that will revolutionize the local agricultural economy and ultimately enhance the food security of the Nigerian people.
The practical advantages of unshackling our farmers from the constraints of rain-fed farming and boosting their capacity for year-round farming cannot be understated. This is precisely what we are doing through this project.
On the part of the beneficiary communities, we have seen that substantial infrastructure and other water distribution facilities have already been rehabilitated, modernised or even replaced. Through the years, these communities have suffered the frustration of poorly maintained water distribution facilities with the attendant losses that have ensued. It is my hope that we will now see these facilities as ours and embrace our collective responsibility of preserving them and ensuring their sustainability.
The commissioning of the Kano iteration of the scheme today is in good part because of the tenacity of the Governor of Kano State, His Excellency, Governor Umar Ganduje who in collaboration with the Ministry of Water Resources ensured that the project was completed and officially commissioned today.
We must also commend the Honourable Minister of Water Resources, Engineer Suleiman Hussein Adamu and his team at the Federal Ministry of Water Resources, the Transforming Irrigation Management in Nigeria Project Steering Committee and the Project Management Unit for this achievement. Please keep up the good work.
Thank you all very much for your kind attention.