ECWC says 5.9 bln Birr Irrigation Dam Will Start Operation Soon after Delays

ADDIS ABABA – Contractor claims Megech Irrigation Project being built in Amhara region with an investment of 5.9bln birr will be completed by the end of current Ethiopian budget year, after numerous delays.

The project – located near the City of Gondar, is one of the several irrigation schemes under construction in the country with a financial budget allocated by the government.

It will have a capacity to develop 17,000 hectares of land and support 45,000 farmers to cultivate three times in a year. Its dam dam will hold 185 million cubic meters of water.

The project, which started 2014, has witnessed several delays on the course of its construction for various reasons, said Yomnase Ayale, CEO of Ethiopian Construction Works Corporation (ECWC), in an interview with ENA.

The CEO has particularly mentioned challenges emanating from frequent design changes, shortages of construction supplies, and lack of efficient project management as reasons for delay.

The construction work has drastically improved over the last two and three years after the construction firm – a public enterprise – took measures to curb the challenges and complete the construction in a short period of time.

The annual performance has now increased between 30 to 40 percent, he said on the construction project which is now 70 percent complete.

The Corporation now expected to finish up the project at the end of this Ethiopian budget year, Yomnase said.
Apart from boosting farmers productivity, authorities expect the project to improve clean drinking water provision to residents of Gondar and its the surrounding community.

Its dam will also create more job opportunities and its artificial lake that could be used as an additional tourist attraction to the city.

Ethiopia has planned to construct nine irrigation projects with an outlay of 21 billion Birr across the nation during the fiscal year, which started on July 7, and develop over 125,000 hectares of land upon completion.

Featured Image: Authorities expect the construction of nine irrigation projects to be concluded at the the end of the current FY. Seen in the photo is Gidabo Irrigation dam. [Photo File/ECWC]