Zamboanga Sibugay – Two (2) irrigation systems of NIA Region 9 namely the Sibuguey Valley Irrigation System (SVIS) Lower 1 Extension and SVIS Lower 2 Extension were inaugurated in a joint ceremony held on July 28, 2021.
At present, SVIS Lower 1 Extension and SVIS Lower 2 Extension are nearly completed with 97% and 96.17% accomplishment respectively. Both irrigation systems are multi-year projects and considered as two (2) of the biggest irrigation projects of NIA Region 9 so far.
The construction of SVIS Lower 1 Extension started in CY 2012 with total allocation of 981 million from CY 2012-2021. While, SVIS Lower 2 Extension started in CY 2014 with a total allocation of 618 million from CY 2014-2019.
Moreover, developments for future years are yet to be constructed to make both systems fully operational. Once fully completed, SVIS Lower 1 Extension will be able to irrigate 1,495 hectares of Riceland in the municipalities of Diplahan, Imelda, and Siay, Zamboanga Sibugay thereby benefitting 1,306 farmers and its families. While, the SVIS Lower 2 Extension will soon irrigate 1,147 hectares of agricultural land in Siay, Zamboanga Sibugay, benefitting 429 farmer families.
The event involved a separate ceremonial blessing held at the system’s Diversion Works located in Brgy. Gaulan, Diplahan, Zamboanga Sibugay for SVIS Lower 1 Extension, and Brgy. Gandiangan, Imelda for SVIS Lower 2 Extension, ribbon-cutting, unveiling of markers, testing of lifting mechanisms and gates, followed by a program held at the Lumpanac Covered Court, Imelda, Zamboanga Sibugay.
The ceremony was led by NIA Deputy Administrator for Engineering and Operations C’zar M. Sulaik, NIA-9 Regional Manager Manuel L. Rañeses, and Zamboanga Sibugay Irrigation Management Office (IMO) Acting Manager Girlie M. Detalla.
Also joining the ceremony were the Division Managers, Heads of NIA-9 Offices, key staff from the Regional Office, Zamboanga Sibugay IMO and SVIS Office, officials and members of Irrigators Associations, LGU representatives, military commanders and troops, other partner stakeholders, and some media personnel.
Regional Manager Rañeses in his speech, thanked everyone especially Engr. Sulaik for coming and for gracing the event. He assured our irrigators associations that NIA with the support of top management officials headed by Administrator Ricardo Visaya, is doing its best in providing efficient, reliable, and sustainable irrigation service to the farmers as support to the agricultural program of the government.
The Guest of Honor and Speaker - Engr. Sulaik expressed his delight to visit Zamboanga Sibugay area for the first time. He emphasized in his message the importance of these two (2) projects, as well as the impact of Free Irrigation Service Act (FISA).
He also requested all Irrigators Associations and LGUs present to take good care of these projects as millions of funds were allotted for its accomplishment in order to increase the agricultural productivity of Zamboanga Sibugay and eventually improve lives of farmer families in the whole province.