Iloilo City – The region’s biggest irrigation development project will proceed under the Duterte Administration. No less than Senate President Pro Tempore Franklin Drilon confirmed this development.
According to the Ilonggo Senator, Department of Agriculture (DA) Secretary Manny Piñol gave his “go” signal to construct the project. Secretary Piñol further assured him that “he will be on top of it” to expedite its implementation.
News on this development spread fast and ended long speculations that the new administration will defer implementation of Jalaur River Multi-Purpose Project Stage II (JRMP II).
National Irrigation Administration (NIA) here welcomed the support extended by the Duterte Administration through the DA Secretary.
“We thank Secretary Piñol for his support for JRMP. We believe that this project will support the programs and policies of the Duterte administration for agriculture especially on making the country rice sufficient in two years and provision of free, sufficient and efficient irrigation system for our farmers,” expressed Regional Manager Gerardo P. Corsiga.
JRMP II is an 11.2 billion pesos project that will provide year-round irrigation to 31, 840 hectares of farm lots in the Province of Iloilo. It will increase the annual yield of palay (rice) from 140, 000 to 300, 000 metric tons per hectare and will help sustain the region’s rice self-sufficiency target of 7.6 percent.
Apart from irrigation, JRMP II will generate 6.6 megawatts of hydroelectric power and will provide bulk water supply for industrial and domestic use. It will also mitigate flooding in Calinog and nearby towns.
Furthermore, the project will create jobs and livelihood opportunities for its stakeholders and will usher eco-tourism development in Calinog.
Currently, NIA is awaiting for the concurrence of the Economic Development Cooperation Fund (EDCF) to award the contract to the winner of the International Competitive Bidding (ICB).
JRMP is a “long-delayed” and “much- needed” development of every Ilonggo Family. /JP (Steve E. Cordero, PRO-C)