JICA’s grant helps Rwanda farmers with three irrigational dams

The government has reactivated irrigation water reserves in Cyimpima and Gashara in Rwamagana district in Rwanda. The Bugugu Dam was also inaugurated. The three facilities provide irrigation water for 1,174 rice, maize and soya farmers.

Farmers in Rwamagana, Rwanda, now have water to irrigate their plantations. The authorities in this East African country have just returned to operation the Cyimpima and Gashara reservoirs after more than a year of restoration. During the same time the government ordered the construction of the Buggu irrigation dam with a 23.7 km long wall. The three facilities are situated in the cities of Kigabiro, Rubona and Mwulire.

The dams basins were repaired from their poor condition in Cyimpima and Gashara. In three Rwamagana marshes 170 hectares were irrigated and 1.174 rice, soy and maize farmers were also given for piping. The irrigated swamps in Rwanda have expanded by 30 hectares with this initiative. In total, the nation has 589,000 acres of marshland, which is irrigated just 48 percent.

The entire work was funded by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) loan of $20 million (approximately 19.5 billion Rwandan francs). In 2017, the funding agreement between the Rwandan and Japanese governments was signed.

The water supply project in the Rwamagana district is also expected to increase farm production and boost income for farmers. The project is part of Step III of the Agricultural Transformation Strategic Plan in Rwanda. It is a key sector-wide development plan for agriculture in the region, according to Claver Gatete, the Minister of Finance and Economic Planning in Rwanda, in 2017.