July 25, 2024

BANGUED, Abra – The magnitude 7 earthquake that hit Northern Luzon on July 27 damaged various irrigation  systems  in the province including the Abra River Irrigation System with service areas in Tayum and Bangued.

Based on the initial assessment of the National Irrigation Administration-Cordillera, the damage incurred by irrigation systems in the province are estimated at P193 million, affecting about 597 hectares.

NIA-Cordillera Director Benito Espique, Jr. and La Paz Mayor Joseph Bernos met with irrigators and farmers to discuss the damage to irrigation systems and for the immediate rehabilitation of irrigation canals.

Farmers’ association heads reported the damage caused by the earthquake and raised their concerns for the validation and action of NIA-Cordillera.

He encouraged the irrigators and farmers to keep in touch with their office to discuss their strategies in bringing back irrigation services to agricultural lands.

Espique assured NIA is fast-tracking the preparation of the programs of work for the request of funding and immediate repair and restoration of the damaged irrigation systems.

Bernos said his office will provide any assistance to the farmers in the restoration of the irrigations systems as Abra is most dependent on agriculture. “You might not be the top priority right now since the government is still delivering emergency response actions but I assure you that we will never forsake our farmers and irrigations,” he said. – Christian Allister Tubadeza