Water and Irrigation Cabinet Secretary Eugene Wamalwa toured the multibillion Galana Kulalu Food Security Irrigation Project on Sunday, for inspection.
Accompanied by food experts, officials from the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Irrigation and Israeli officials behind the project, Wamalwa confirmed that 2,000 acres of the land has been planted maize.
With addition of pumps and centre pivots, the Cabinet Secretary said the crop will achieve greater acreage.
Automatic self cleaning filtration system that filters approximately 5, 000cubic meters per hour in the 10,000Acre model farm is now working according to Wamalwa.
Israeli firm officials behind the Sh7.2 billion project are speeding it up to allow the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to commission it, during his State Visit to Kenya in few weeks.
The project is being funded by the government of Israel in partnership with the Kenyan government, given that 70 per cent of the country under arid conditions such as Kenya, can not afford to rely on rain fed agriculture, thus the need for the irrigation project.
The Israeli government is providing an additional grant of Sh3.5 billion for training of 100 young Kenyans who will get free training on irrigation engineering in Israel, annually, for six years.
Though hit with a scandal before the National Assembly cut its earlier budget from Sh14 billion, the Galana Kulalu irrigation project is expected to cut Kenya’s reliance on rain-fed agriculture that is blamed for the perennial food shortage.