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ORDA shared its experience at federal level on fruitful small scale irrigation schemes development at the federal level

Minister d’état disclosed developments of small scale irrigation schemes resulted in independency of farmers on rainfall & enhance productivity. 


By Esubalew Dires 

The Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia (FDRE) Ministry of Agriculture conducted a pioneer consultative workshop on developments of small scale irrigation schemes on the 6th of April 2015 at Debre Damo Hotel, Addis Ababa.

Minister d’état of the Ministry of Agriculture, his Excellency Ato Sileshi Getahun remarked Ethiopian economy is highly relied on agriculture (particularly crop & livestock production) and rural development policy. Ato Seleshi said the country is striving in the expansion of small scale irrigation schemes to make farmers independent on seasonal rainfall for the production of crops. 
Minister d’état disclosed 95% Ethiopian farmers are small holder agriculturalists and changing traditional irrigation systems into modern and addressing them is vital. In GTP, the country has planned to irrigate 1.8 million ha and now over 2.8 million ha land is being maximized for irrigation which was only 835 ha 5 years ago. 

It was indicated that the surveying & design works of many irrigation schemes are poor in quality, low capacity (human resource, equipments & machine), disexistence of accountability, lack of professional ethics were the major gaps to be filled in the upcoming.


The Organization for Rehabilitation and Development in Amhara (ORDA) is performing best with regard to the construction of irrigation schemes. Nationally, the organization has become exemplary and was invited to brief its experience at the workshop. Ato Gugsa Meshesha, director of WRDP in his presentation pointed out that the reason for ORDA’s timely and high quality irrigation construction is due to its strong linkage and collaboration with government officials, farmers and partners from regional to kebele lebel. Ato Gugsa also reminded participants to persuade farmers/beneficiaries before launching construction and make active contributors around the schemes. What makes ORDA different from private architects and consultancy firms is its strong alliance with the communities it is serving for. ORDA makes a thorough discussion in areas of construction with farmers and turn up at consensus. As a result, beneficiaries play a significant role to complete the schemes in a short period of time. 


Ato Silesh said only 24% of the allocated budget is used. He remarked participants to consider ORDA’s experience in the construction of quality irrigation schemes in short time to boost productivity. 

Participants composed from Ministry of Agriculture, Amhara, Tigray, Oromia, Southern Nations and Nationalities heads and officers and consultants and architects from private sector made a thorough discussion at the workshop in relation to the challenges and actions to be taken.


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