The 2nd round of the Office of the Rt. Hon. Prime Minister Robinah Nabbanja in Central region under the farmer mobilization and education campaign took place in Greater Luwero region from 1-3rd September 2023. This is part of the ZUKUKA drive that is to cover the different agro-ecological zones of Uganda. The campaign also aims to boost the production, productivity, and profitability of agriculture. The NARO team used the opportunity to disseminate technologies and build the capacity of stakeholders in the Nakaseke, Nakasongola, and Luwero districts. While accompanying the Prime Minister at Nakaseke, the Minister of State for Micro-finance Hon. Haji Haruna Kasolo called on the public to utilize the ‘Myogga’ funds to develop and invest in agricultural projects or enterprises like poultry rearing to earn a living and make their lives better. These were told that one could pay back after one year so that other stakeholders could benefit. He advised the public to work hard and indulge in businesses where they earn daily so as to accumulate funds and get rich. He also cautioned them against unnecessary spending.
Hon. Fred Bwino, State Minister for Agriculture advised farmers to utilize services offered by the ministry agencies like NARO, NAADS, and UCDA among others.
While in Nakasongola, the Prime Minister, called on the district Production department to encourage farmers to adopt mechanization
and work towards producing seeds for the market. She appreciated the model farmers that she visited who were doing a commendable job in crop and animal rearing and called on farmers to emulate such farmers.
She further advised them to carry out agriculture with a business mindset for example to plant and sell crop products for both local and international markets. She addressed the challenge of land grabbing that was affecting agriculture and the community as a whole, by promising to get money through the Land fund to enable the government pay for such land under such misunderstandings. The Prime Minster also urged the Agricultural officers not to only support the rich but visit the poor farmers. Six motorcycles were given to the officers in Nakasongola with a focus of supporting the local farmers.
In Luwero, the PM was accompanied by the Minister of Public Service Ms. Margret Mugasha, the Minister of Education Hon. Dr. John Chrysestom Muyingo, and the Minister of Economic Monitoring. Others included the Deputy Secretary General Ms. Namayanja and Hon. Lydia Wanyoto leader of the women’s wing in NRM. The Prime Minster called on the district Production department to serve the community with diligence. She sighted Mr. Mugerwa a prominent coffee farmer with 50 acres in Luwero who reaps 300million every six months. She called on other farmers to emulate him by visiting his farm and learning the good practices he uses. He is currently beginning to add value to his coffee.
She advised farmers with limited land like an acre to grow high-value crops like onions using seed from private seed companies like East African Seed. One can reap 60 bags every three months and this can be done three times with modern irrigation.
She advised them to use Parish Development Model (PDM) funds where one can get 1,000,000/= and carry out profitable farming. She called on district staff to help enter PDM beneficiary persons in the data systems. She promised to request the Minister of ICT for technical persons per district for nine days to support the staff.
The ZUKUKA-KISOBOKA drive included several private sector players like financial institutions, seed companies like Holland Green Tech, Bukoola, and Syova, and farmer groups among others. NARO sold five maize Sheller’s to the OPM office and three forage choppers were on order. The Prime Minister appreciated NARO for participating in the campaign and requested them to support more government programmes through the dissemination of quality technologies.