Swampy and useless land near Lake Chad, in western Chad, is being reclaimed and irrigated and now grows useful crops, including cotton, wheat, potatoes and sugar cane.
GV Sandbanks in Lake Chad
SV ZOOM TO GV Labourers work on lock PAN TO concrete canal lock (2 shots)
GV Irrigation channel (concrete) (2 shots)
GV Control point for irrigation works under construction
GV HIGH ANGLE TILT TO Concrete water course
GV Terminal of concrete water course with pipes in B/G ready for assembly
SV Workers PAN TO pipeline in position
GV Completed section of water course.
GV & CU Cotton grows in plantation (2 shots)
MVs Women pick cotton (4 sots)
GV Growing sugar cane & (2 shots)
SV Hose runs from lake to pump, labourers fill irrigation storage beds (Shot pans along hose)
SV Labourers work in irrigated fields
CU Seed potatoes being cut for sowing (2 shots)
MV Labourers handle potatoes.
SV & CU Workers prepare irrigation channels in field (2 shots)
SV Workers prepare ground with hoe
MV Woman plants potatoes.
GV PAN ALONG Hose via pump, workers in background.
Initials JB/JF/ES.18.26 JB/JF/BB/2212
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Background: Swampy and useless land near Lake Chad, in western Chad, is being reclaimed and irrigated and now grows useful crops, including cotton, wheat, potatoes and sugar cane.
The ultimate aim of the scheme is to reclaim some 62,000 acres (25,000 hectares) of land and make it productive.
Chad authorities began helping the local people with reclamation work int eh area around the lake in 1950 -- helping drain swampy ground and improve techniques of cultivation. in 1954, drainage work was hampered when the level of water in the lake rose suddenly. But by 1964 some 3,500 acres (1,400 hectares) of reclaimed land was under cultivation and producing good corps of wheat.
It was at this time that the Chad authorities secured help for the scheme from the World Food Programme, a United Nations sponsored body which helps provide emergency relief and stimulate economic and social development through aid in the form of food.
The total cost of the scheme is expected to amount to about GBP 1.2 million (2.8 million dollars) of which the World Food Programme contribution is expected to be about GBP 900,000 (2.1 million dollars).
In 1967 earth-moving work involving 160,000 cubic yards (120,000 cubic metres) of soil made possible the isolation of 8,000 acres (3,200 hectares) of land, the construction of five new dams as well as completion of necessary ancillary work on 18 other dams. In August that year a company was formed to co-ordinate rural, industrial and economic development work in the Lake Chad district.
In 1968, concerted action by external aid organisations including the World Food Programme, and the French Aid and Co-operation Fund, and by a local labour force, resulted in the construction of 51 dams helping to crate 27 reclaimed areas with a surface of 37,000 acres (15,000 hectares) about half of this completely drained and about a quarter of the total area put under wheat.
The economic future of the areas promises to show good rewards for the work being carried out there.