Drip irrigation technology introduced to dam users in Sissala Districts

Farmers and dam users in Sissala West and East districts in the Upper West Region, have been introduced to drip irrigation technology to help improve their livelihood.

The drip irrigation technology incorporates a system of pipe systems to ensure water gets to the roots of plants in a piece of land for gardening during the dry season.

Mr. David Scholl, a Peace Corps Volunteer stationed at Kupulima and working at Green Sahara Organisation, an environmental conservation organisation, said the usage of dam in the two districts had been plagued with challenges.

He said inadequate water channels, fewer watering cans and hose, less valve pressure, pests and diseases as well as inadequate technical know-how by farmers contributed immensely to the under utilisation of dams thereby rendered farmers unproductive.

Mr. Scholl said he sourced funds from the Food Security Unit of the Peace Corps to start the technology at Kupulima Dam to encourage more farmers to develop interest in the efficient use of dam water during dry season farming.

The Kupulima Dam is provided with a 1,000 square metre of pipes system at its garden.

He said even though the drip irrigation system was expensive, it ensures high water application and has the ability to irrigate irregular fields as well as providing standardized distribution of water and could improve food security.

Mr. Scholl said Plan Ghana, an international non-governmental organisation had for the past years spent substantial resources under its food security programme to help improve livelihoods of the people in the two districts.

However, the provision of dams covering about 20-acre irrigable lands for farmers in six communities, who are always idle, especially during the dry seasons, yielded no results.

Mr. Nicholas Nagble, a Natural Resource and Environmental Officer, working at Peace Corps Ghana, during a training session at Pulima, one of the beneficiary communities, urged farmers in the two districts to embrace the technology because it has a high potential of empowering them more economically than other interventions.

He said the northern part of the country is endowed with abundance of river water and drip system of irrigation technology was ideal and useful for farmers considering the evaporation rate of water sources in the area.

Mr. Nagble appealed to partners of Peace Corps to provide vativa grass to help address the leakage of some dams in the area.

The farmers appealed to the Ministry of Food and Agriculture and other stakeholders to assist them to cultivate tomatoes in gardens while efforts were made to extend the project to other communities.

Source: GNA

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