QUEZON CITY -- Under the leadership of Administrator Ricardo R. Visaya, the National Irrigation Administration (NIA) conducted the Inauguration of the P4.497-billion Chico River Pump Irrigation Project (CRPIP) on June 25, 2022 at Sitio Casiling, Barangay Katabbogan, Pinukpuk, Kalinga.
Started in 2018, CRPIP is a flagship infrastructure project financed by the People’s Republic of China thru the China Export Import Bank under President Rodrigo Roa Duterte’s Administration “Build Build Build” Program. The project includes the construction of pump house, sub-station, transmission line, diversion main canal, lateral canals, appurtenant structures, service/access road, and terminal facilities. It aims to provide substantial and timely water supply for irrigation in support to the agricultural development of the Government.
With water source from the Chico River, the project is set to irrigate 8,700 hectares of agricultural land in the Province of Cagayan (7,539 hectares in Tuao and Piat) and part of Kalinga (1,170 hectares in Pinukpuk) benefitting 4,992 farmers and their families. With the partial operation of the project, CRPIP will irrigate 1,000 hectares of agricultural land covering the Municipality of Pinukpuk, Kalinga, as well as the barangays of San Luis, Malumin, Malalinta, Bikok, and Angang in Tuao, Cagayan.
President Rodrigo Roa Duterte and Chinese Ambassador Huang Xilian delivered their pre-recorded video message to the attendees of the ceremony, commending NIA’s efforts on the project implementation. Chinese Minister Counselor Yang Guoliang, DA Regional Executive Director Narciso A. Edillo, CRPIP Acting Project Manager Reyvelino B. Apongol, NIA Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR) Manager Benito T. Espique, Jr., NIA Region II Manager Raymundo B. Apil, China CAMC Engineering Co., Ltd. Chairman Wang Bo, local government officials, and irrigators association (IA) officers and members were present during the event.
NIA also conducted the partial turnover of irrigation facilities of P5.4-billion Malitubog-Maridagao Irrigation Project – Phase II (MMIP-II) to NIA Region XII on June 23, 2022 led by NIA Deputy Administrator for Engineering and Operations Sector C’zar M. Sulaik. The newly turned-over facilities will benefit more than 1,000 farmers in the Municipality of Pikit, North Cotabato irrigating 1,642 hectares of farmlands.
With 85% overall physical accomplishment, MMIP-II is also included on the 119 infrastructure flagship projects under the Build, Build, Build Program of the National Government that supports agriculture and food security. Thus, Undersecretary Emil K. Sadain of the Department of Public Works and Highways who is also the Chief Implementer of the Build, Build, Build Program graced the event.
Benefitting from the newly turned-over facilities in Pikit, North Cotabato are 110 farmers from Gli-Gli Lat H and LatH2 IA Inc., 159 farmers from Bulao Bulo IA, Inc., 150 farmers from Tigpo IA, Inc., 201 farmers from Makauyag Lat H IA Inc., 250 farmers from Maglib IA Inc., and 229 farmers from Sitio Galigayan IA Inc.
MMIP II’s major components include 59.09 kilometers main canal, 81.91 kilometers lateral earth canal, 823 units of appurtenant structures, and 361 units on farm level structures. Once fully completed, this will divert irrigation water from Maridagao River utilizing the facilities of MMIP I with the goal of providing efficient, reliable, and sustainable irrigation service to 9,528 hectares of agricultural land in the municipalities of Aleosan and Pikit in Cotabato and Pagalungan and Datu Montawal in Maguindanao.
Also present in the event are NIA Region XII Regional Manager Diosdado A. Rosales, MMIP-II Acting Project Manager Reynaldo M. Sarigumba, Bangsamoro Transition Authority Member of Parliament Ali O. Salik representing Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao Chief Minister Ahod Balawag Ebrahim, Political Affairs Assistant Nicanor T. Nanlabi from the Office of North Cotabato 1st District Representative Joselito Sacdalan, Ray Domingo of the Department of Agriculture (DA), Nasser Gayagay from the Office of Pikit Mayor Sumulong K. Sultan, Commission on Audit Auditor Romeo A. Casupang, and other NIA officials.
NIA, as the lead government agency responsible in developing all possible sources of water for irrigation now serves as the country’s driving force to move forward to agricultural productivity, economic growth, and food sufficiency. (DA)