(VIDEO) Lower Kuja Scheme Gets Combine Harvestors, Roars To Life As Sh200m Rice Harvest Expected


By MN Reporter

The multi-billion Lower Kuja Irrigation Scheme in Migori county has roared back to life after storm and stalled brewed over compensation claims.

Over the past year work on the scheme was stalled and negatively affected as at least 32 court cases concerning compensation was filed against National Irrigation Board.

A total of 20,223 affected families were earmarked for compensation of Sh106.7million but the process has been delayed y lack of title deeds, poor land marking and lack of identifications in the scheme that started operations over half decade ago.

“We had challenges of compensation, but we managed to have dialogue with the community to look at a bigger picture to allow the scheme to go on,” Kennedy Ouma, manager at the scheme said.

He said for the past four months they rehabilitated infrastructure like roads, water canals and vulves which opened up the scheme and saw improved planting.

In the last four months the scheme opened 1,200 acres of land for paddy rice with estimated over 5,000 tone of paddy rice to be harvested with a value of Sh200million.

“We are happy with production, we have introduced mechanisation by bringing a combine harvester which has cut cost of harvesting from about Sh15,000 an acre when manually used to half,” he said.

When completed, the scheme will place over 19,000 of semi-arid and flood prone land under irrigation. Farmers so far have started to diversify to other trial crops with 100 acres for onions, 50 acres under tomatoes, 2,000 cares under sugarcane and soya beans expected to take over from empty rice fields withing seasons