Karamoja Tractor Hire Scheme Launched

The Karamoja tractor hire scheme was launched in March this year to kickstart the government pilot study of mechanized agriculture in the Karamoja sub-region. As the government strives to achieve food and income security in Karamoja sub-region, the tractor hire scheme is expected to boost food production and incomes in the region.

The Ministry of Agriculture Animal Industry and Fisheries (MAAIF) flagged off the scheme at the beginning of the season to enable farmers open large farmlands to catch up with the rainy season and increase production. The tractors are kept and managed at Nabuin ZARDI. These tractors are hired rotating in the 9 districts of Karamoja opening farmlands, starting from the Nabilatuk district. The Minister of Agriculture Hon Frank Tumwebaze, called farmers to embrace the affordable tractor hire scheme and increase food productivity.

Ten tractors were handed to Nabuin ZARDI. And later, additional five tractors were added and deployed in northern Karamoja districts. The tractors are complemented with, a low bed to transfer tractors from one district to another, a fuel tanker, and a tractor service van. The regional mechanization center is stationed at Nabuin ZARDI.

Tractors packed at Nabuin ZARDI station Nabilatuk district.

Hon. Anyakun, the state minister for Disaster Preparedness applauded the tractor scheme and said that this tractor initiative will boost food production in the households. Anyakun urged farmers to embrace the program. She also appealed to Operation Wealth Creation to provide timely quality seeds for farmers to catch up with the first planting. 

Dr. Okullo, the Director of Research, Nabuin ZARDI welcomed the tractor hire scheme as an intervention that will create an impact in the communities. He said that Karamoja’s flat landscape is apposite for mechanization.

A month on, the demand for tractors for hire services in the region has kept increasing, starting from the pilot district of Nabilatuk. This has caused delays for rotation and farmers are scrambling for the few tractors to open land to catch up with the rainy season. Karamoja sub-region has one major rainy season.

Tractors opening land in Kalapata, Kaabong district.

So far, over 1400 acres of land have been opened in Nabilatuk, Moroto, and Kaabong districts in one month. The tractor hire service for Karamoja subregion presents a potential for the region to prop up food production and ward off hunger and food insecurity. Especially, when completed with quality seed and favorable rainfall.


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