Ntcheu, The newly constructed Bwanje Dam in Dedza is set to benefit more than 2, 000 smallholder rice farmers in the district as it will be used to harvest rain water, Assistant Irrigation Engineer, Patrick Katswiri has said.
In interview with Malawi News Agency (Mana) Sunday in Ntcheu, he said that the dam which harvested rain water during the Cyclone Idai would use the water for irrigation of rice under Bwanje Irrigation Scheme in Dedza.
Katswiri said the first phase which was the construction of the dam, has helped reduce flooding of different rivers in Dedza as the Bwanje Dam was used to conserve rain water, adding that the dam would improve the living standards of farmers once it becomes operational.
Farmers will start using Bwanje Irrigation Scheme in June after they have harvested their crops. At first, farmers were using 250 hectares of land but now due to availability of water in Bwanje, there will be able to use more than 250 hectares, he observed.
Katswiri added that the dam which is only being used by rice farmers in Dedza, will also be used for irrigation of other crops apart from rice, saying: should there be a possibility of potential donor interested in investing and growing the Bwanje Irrigation Scheme in the second phase.
Source: MANA Online