Deputy Minister of Agriculture tours construction works

The Deputy Minister interacting with the Director of Irrigation Services, Engineer Geoffrey Mamba

Delegates led by the Deputy Minister of Agriculture Honorable Agnes Nkusa Nkhoma braved the scorching sun to appreciate the progress of construction works at the intake and first 6kms of the main canal in Chikwawa.ย 

Speaking during the visit, Honorable Nkusa Nkhoma expressed satisfaction with the progress made during the three months since the last ministerial visit on 12th June 2021.ย ย 

โ€œI am so impressed with the progress the project has made since the last visit we made in June.ย 

This development will be a major boost to the agriculture sector especially to smallholder farmers in the Shire Valley who are mostly affected by either floods or drought every year.ย 

This irrigation scheme will assist them to grow crops throughout the year for commercial purposes. Time has come for our farmers to start transitioning from smallholder to commercial farming,โ€ she said.

There has been good progress in the construction of the Intake and the first 6kms of the Main Canal. 3.376kms of 4.09km canal concrete has been lined, major works at the intake are in progress, 2 of 3 bridge crossings have been completed, 1 of 3 siphons under is construction, the flume is 90% complete, and 14 out of 16 drainage works have been completed. All this translates to 55% progress on works under this particular contract.

Phase 1 of the Shire Valley Transformation comprises two contracts. The first is the construction of the intake and the first 6kms of the Main Canal and the second is the construction of Main Canals 1 and 2 covering a distance of 44kms to Lengwe National Park. Construction of Main Canals 1 and 2 is progress with the contractor mobilizing in preparation for construction works.ย ย 

Overall, the first phase will cover a distance of 50kms.