The existence of irrigation systems guarantees the production of rice and other commodities. However, the maintenance of the latter requires a significant financial investment. Because of lack of resources, farmers, whose incomes have steadily declined over the years, have allowed water and irrigation infrastructure to deteriorate. The PADAP project thus intervenes to rehabilitate and maintain the water and irrigation resources available in the targeted landscapes.
A challenge for rehabilitating and maintaining water and irrigation resources
The efforts of the PADAP project are aimed not only at solving problems related to the reduction of irrigation capacity but also at preserving the country’s food production capacity. All infrastructure rehabilitation will follow a “rebuilding better” approach and standards for climate resilience. The standards used will be those developed or under development by the Prevention and Emergency Management Cell (EMPC).
In detail, the PADAP project focuses mainly on recalibration, remodelling and compaction of canals, drainage ditches and outlets for irrigated areas. It also aims to rehabilitate small reservoirs such as walls, barriers, diversion channels while improving soil levelling and drip irrigation systems.
Other activities including the installation or rehabilitation of hydrological monitoring equipment and pumping stations using solar technology will also be implemented.
Collaboration with ANDEA and SEA
The PADAP project is all the more profitable for the National Water and Sanitation Authority (ANDEA) and for the associations of water users (AUE). In particular, they will benefit from technical assistance and capacity building.
In the details, the PADAP project will work hand in hand with ANDEA to finalize the inventory of water resources. A river basin office, under the supervision of the Ministry of Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (MEAH), will be set up as a leader in the SAVA region. To the extent possible, the Office, whose main task is to manage and ensure the availability of water resources, will be composed of reassigned staff from the appropriate Ministry and technical assistants who will be hired as required. A hydrological model will also be developed so that the River Basin Board can plan for integrated land and water use.
At the same time, the PADAP project will ensure that ERAs effectively operate, maintain and sustain irrigation systems. To do this, the associations will be allocated small agricultural equipment and machinery. The PADAP project also plans to finance technical design studies, civil engineering works, supervision of construction works and the supply and installation of equipment. The most efficient AUE, in terms of recovery of operating and maintenance costs, will receive funding first.