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Government signs agreement with Gulu Archdiocese for agricultural mechanization

GULU -The government through the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries (MAAIF) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Gulu Archdiocese on agricultural mechanization.

The agreement which was signed barely a week ago from Gulu Archdiocese is a binding document between the government and Gulu Archdiocese on cassava commercialization and industrialization.

The Director National Agricultural Advisory Services (NAADS), Samuel Mugasi in a statement said, the agreement will cement the strategic partnership between the government and Gulu Archdiocese.

Mugasi explained that the church is best suited for the mobilization of farmers to cement the government efforts on poverty eradication interventions.

“We want to mobilize farmers, sensitize them on best agronomic practices and organize them in groups to take advantage of commercialization,” Mugasi added.

John Baptist Odama, the Archbishop of Gulu Archdiocese commended the government for engaging the church in the poverty eradication programs.

Bishop Odama explained that the establishment between the church and the government will back up support for current cassava production in Acholi Bur model farmers’ cooperatives.

However, in the same function, President Yoweri Museveni also fulfilled his pledges for a tractor to Gulu Archdiocese for agricultural mechanization.

His commitment followed an assurance he made to the church in March 2020 from Acholi Bur while on his 2021 presidential campaigns.

The tractor registration number UBH-084-P, according to the church will be stationed in Acholi Bur in Pader district to support more than 10,000 registered cooperative farmers.

Meanwhile, the government has also procured 5 tractors for the church which is expected to be delivered in the next two weeks according to the Ministry of Agriculture.

The National Agricultural Advisory Services (NAADS) has in the past distributed 24 tractors in the 8 districts of Acholi through the Operation Wealth Creation (OWC) in the last 5 years.

The Senior Communication Manager in the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries says the 5 years intervention in the North will mainly focus on agricultural enterprises.

In an earlier interview, the Minister for Agriculture, Frank Tumwebaze revealed that the Ministry had started profiling the different parts of the country for crop enterprise selection adding that an industry will soon be established in Acholi Bur, Pader district to process cassava.

“It isn’t going to be a Ministry established in Kampala but rather the Ministry in the field and now we need to change from being sensational to choosing what works for us,” Tumbabaze added.

He revealed that only 35% of the 82% of Uganda’s arable land is being utilized due to limited support to the farmers which he says has hindered the country from achieving its economic potential.

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