The National Irrigation Administration (NIA) recently inaugurated the newly rehabilitated Malatgao River Irrigation System (RIS) in Barangay Bagong Sikat, Narra, in an aim to increase rice productivity.
Palawan Irrigation Management Office (IMO) manager Engr. Conrado Cardenas, Jr., said that the rehabilitation happened after 31 years of the Malatgao RIS construction.
“Way back 1998, ang area ng ating national system (Malatgao RIS) ay 3,600 hectares. By continuous rehabilitation ay dumating din itong NISRIP (National Irrigation Sector Rehabilitation and Improvement Project) ay naging 6,600 hectares for the Narra area,” he said.
The rehabilitated irrigation project amounting to P202,050,137.13 will benefit 1,585 farmers of towns of Aborlan and Narra.
The project was implemented from 2012 to 2019 through the implementing agency, NIA and its co-implementing agency, Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice). It is funded by Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) through NISRIP.
The rehabilitation of Malatgao RIS also aims to establish a sustainable operation and maintenance system and strengthen the irrigators’ association (IA). The project will cover 11 IAs as beneficiaries of the irrigation system.
NISRIP project manager Silvino Navarro said that the harvest production before the rehabilitation was ranging from three to four tons per hectare and increased to four to five tons per hectare.
“Ngayon sa NISRIP, itinaas natin ang ating objective from four to five tons per hectares. Habang ginagawa ang NISRIP ay tumaas naman halos tumaas na ‘yong ani natin,” he said.
NIA stated that the benefit of the project is to improve the average cropping intensity, increase irrigated area, and increase paddy yields.
The service area is about 3, 014.73 hectares with total length of canals of 26. 758 kilometers.
The ribbon cutting and unveiling of the marker are also conducted on the turnover of IA offices and post-harvest facilities in barangay Sandoval, Narra.
The 11 IAs had also signed a memorandum of agreement with the NIA for the turnover of IA offices.