An Evaluation of Bani (Dambo) Systems as a Smallholder Irrigation Development Strategy in Zimbabwe
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There is little disagreement among experts that to increase agricultural production in sub-Saharan Africa, especially in the semiarid areas, in view of the fact that these areas receive limited rainfall and face frequent droughts and have only 15% of their irrigation potential developed and utilized, irrigation development is critical. Due to high costs of infrastructure development of conventional irrigation systems and the prevalence of general pessimism based on the current low level of performance of the already existing projects in terms of financial, managerial and environmental objectives, it is imperative to evauate smallholder irrigation systems under farmer management as an alternative and/or complementary irrigation development strategy. This paper compares and evaluates the socio-economic characteristics and the technical efficiency of the Bani system to the formal systems and makes recommendations for its development.
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