Irrigation gets Sh6.3bn in budget

The government has allocated Sh6.3 billion to irrigation projects countrywide to improve food security. The money will be used to expand irrigation projects and rehabilitate old irrigation schemes

Presenting the budget statement yesterday to the National Assembly, Treasury CS Henry Rotich said the money will ensure Kenya becomes food-sufficient.

“The country will be food secure through agriculture, which is the backbone of our economy,” he said.

 The schemes set to benefit include the Galana-Kulalu irrigation scheme, which will receive Sh600 million, Mwea (Sh2.1 billion) and Bura (Sh900 million).

“The government has allocated Sh2.2 billion for the expansion irrigation projects, Sh200 million for smallholder irrigation programmes and Sh300 million for community-based irrigation programmes,” Rotich added.

He said the government has increased land under irrigation to more than 27,000 acres between 2013 and last year. Other areas set to benefit include the livestock offtake programme (Sh700 million), subsidized fertilizer programme(Sh4.1 billion) and water management programme at Sh6.7 billion.

The country faces an inflation rise from 6.5 per cent last year to nine per cent this year. Rotich blamed this on the ongoing drought, which has ravaged more than 23 counties.