Mukose Arnold Anthony
As the World continue to celebrate the World Food Day on the 16th October, Farmers in Uganda under their umbrella Eastern and Southern Africa small scale farmers forum (ESAFF Uganda) have urged government to subside Agricultural mechanization machines to make them affordable to small scale farmers.
ESAFF Uganda chairperson Mr. Hakim Baliraine said that the current market prices for some agricultural machines such as tractors are too high especially to the small holder farmers yet they are the majority stakeholders in the Agriculture sector
“The cost of production is high because of using traditional rudimentary tools hence the government should ensure that we farmers can access modern farming tools such walking tractors, oxen ploughs and other machines this will lower the cost of production in the agricultural sector thus enhance agricultural production which will make Uganda food secure”. Mr. Baliraine said.
They also demand the government to also work on the issue of Women owning land, though majority of Ugandans Women are accessing lands for substance farming but they don’t have the right to own such resources this has also affected their participation in Agriculture sector meaningfully.
M/s Beti Aguti the Policy and Advocacy Specialist at Caritas Uganda also said that by calling up on Government to ensure that farmers have access to cheap Irrigation technologies, she noted that over depending on rain water is becoming big challenge to farmers especially in the water stressed regions this will support farmers to grow more food for both domestic consumption and export.
On the Government’s decision giving 100 Billion shillings to Uganda Grains council, we the small scale farmers are urging government to recall the 100 billion allocated to buy off excess maize through Uganda Grain Council to be directly transferred to farmers through cooperatives or organized groups.
However senior Officer in the Ministry of Agriculture who spoke to Chimp reports on conditions of anonymity said Government can only support farmers to acquire agricultural machines when they are in-groups.
“The challenge in the sector is that most farmers are operating at Individual basis it makes it very difficult to support such farmers let them form farming groups that is when government will respond easily to their plight” The source said.