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Musakashi South Irrigation Scheme

This project site is located in Musakashi Farming Block under the jurisdiction of Mufulira District Council in the Copperbelt of Zambia. The site is located approximately on latitude 12° 37’ south and longitude 28° 09’east and at an altitude of about 1,200m AMSL. The area can be accessed by a gravel road from the main Kitwe-Mufulira road about 35kms north-west of Kitwe.

 

The project area is comprising mainly of two farms with an estimated hectarage of 4584ha (farm No. 4288 with 2711ha and farm No. 4287 with 1873ha) and the land to be developed for irrigation is slightly over 1000ha. More than half of the land in Musakashi is titled while the rest are being processed for title. To the south of the 4,000ha and immediately across the Musakashi River is the Copperbelt Technical Assessment Site (CTAS) which has had land allocated from Zambia Agricultural Research Institute (ZARI) to over 110 smallholder farming plots. Originally the area was settled by graduates of the Zambian Agricultural College and 12 of these farmers formed the Sustainable Agricultural Development Association (SADA) which has since been formed into the Akabangilile Multi-Purpose Cooperative that now embraces more than 120 smallholder farmers in the area.

 

There are 800ha for development in Musakashi which is divided into two sites as indicated below:

 

Southern Site (Under Construction)

·         Tier 1 – 95 Ha-For Small Scale Farmers – 174Plots of ? 0.50ha Hose furrow

·         Tier 2 – 50 Ha-For Medium Scale Farmers – 18 Plots of ? 1.35ha sprinklers plus a small C.P. of 19 ha

·         Tier 3 – 390 Ha-For Commercial Farmers – 7 CP of 54ha each

 

Northern Site

·         Tier 1 – 100 Ha-For Small Scale Farmers – 191 plots of ? 0.50ha Hose furrow

·         Tier 2 – 60 Ha-For Medium Scale Farmers – 24 plots of ? 1.35ha sprinklers plus a small C.P. of 19 ha

·         Tier 3 – 105 Ha-For Commercial Farmers – 2 CP of 39ha each & 1 CP of 27ha

 


The ZARI research station located close by has facilities for soil survey, plant quarantine and seed control and certification as well as an agro-meteorological station. Most farmers cultivate rainfed crops and have livestock and poultry enterprises and several have established small irrigation areas using diesel or electric-powered pumps to abstract water from the small perennial streams that traverse the area or from the one small dam located on the northern boundary of the area. One large commercial farm pumps water from the nearby Kafue River to irrigate 600ha of wheat on an area about 3kms north-west of the site. An 11 KvA ZESCO power line passes through the area and has been used by several landholders for electric power.

 

The area is close to major urban markets of Copperbelt (Kitwe and Ndola) and there are opportunities to produce for the nearby Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) markets. The 8kms access road from the Mufulira-Kitwe main road to and through the project area is not tarred and not very accessible especially during the rainy season