NIA, Korean contractor ink Jalaur dam contract

SENATOR Franklin M. Drilon witnesses the signing of the contract for the construction of the P11.2-billion Jalaur River Multi-purpose Project Phase II (JRMP II) on Sept. 3, 2018 at the National Irrigation Administration (NIA) in Quezon City. (Joseph Vidal photo)

AFTER years of delays and legal hurdles, the P11.2-billion Jalaur River Multi-purpose project Phase II (JRMP II) in Calinog, Iloilo will surely proceed with the signing of the project contract.

The contract signing happened between the National Irrigation Administration (NIA) led by Administrator Ricardo R. Visaya and Daewoo Engineering & Construction Co., Ltd. Manila branch manager Se Won Park on Sept 3, 2018 at the NIA Central Office in Quezon City.

Project proponent and Ilonggo Senator Franklin Drilon, Iloilo Gov. Arthur Defensor Sr, and other guests witnessed the signing.

In a previous interview with The Daily Guardian, Engr. Jonel Borres, NIA-6 Division Manager for Engineering, said the contract signing would be followed by the groundbreaking this October.

He said the Korean project contractor and NIA mutually set the schedule.

Mayor Alex Centena of Calinog said the town is all set for the scheduled groundbreaking next month. He said Pres. Rodrigo Duterte has expressed interest to grace the ceremony.

Centena said they have surveyed and secured the area.

“The construction of the JRMP II will now push through 100 percent,” he said.

Centena also said that they need 17,000 workers for the project such as laborers, masonry, welders, and drivers, among others.

Interested applicants can submit their applications to the NIA-6 office or to the Calinog municipal hall.

JRMP II is expected to contribute to the country’s rice production target of 7.6 percent.

It will benefit more than 783,000 farmers and increase annual production of rice to 300,000 metric tons from 140,000 in Iloilo.

It will also provide year-round irrigation to 31,840 hectares of farm lots in Iloilo.

The Korean government through the Export-Import Bank’s Economic Development Cooperation Fund extended P8.95 billion as official development assistance to the project. The Philippine government shouldered P2.2 billion.

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