Kiryandongo Farmers Receive Tractors
Authorities in Kiryandongo district have handed over the three tractors with their associated implements received from National Agricultural Advisory Services to the three beneficiaries. The three beneficiaries are Nyamahasa Area Cooperative,Equator Seed Limited and David Onya a nucleus farmer receiving tractors registration numbers UBE 720 Q,UBF 607 M and UBF 073 P respectively.
Kiryandongo district submitted a list of nine interested farmer groups to the Ministry of Agriculture which under went through evaluation basing on the eligibility criteria that was set by the Ministry through NAADS and only three applicants succeeded and were required to contribute 20% of the value of the tractor and its implements an equivalent of shillings 12,500,000/= which would be retained by the beneficiaries on their accounts for purposes of acquiring additional implements.
The successful applicants were later required to identify two operators to undergo training before the tractors were handed over for use.
The tractors handed over were received by Kiryandongo district under support by the National Agricultural Advisory Services secretariat programme on promoting agricultural mechanization and increased productivity in the entire country.
According to Charles Ntairehoki Amooti the district chairman Kiryandongo,the tractors supplied under NAADS will help address the problem of small scale farming and use of rudimentary tools which have been a hindrance to agricultural productivity in the district. Ntairehoki appealed to the beneficiaries to maximize the use of the tractors and help the small scale farmers in terms of hiring out the tractors at a subsidized cost. He further called upon the beneficiaries to consider the environmental impact of mechanized agriculture and asked them to plant more trees whenever they open land for ploughing. “I know with mechanization there is no way you can plough where a tree is, so there is high level of falling of trees to plough. Make sure you plant trees in your farms.” Ntairehoki said.
Peter Debele the RDC Kiryandongo warned the operators against misuse of the tractors and moving them on the highway at night which is likely to cause accidents. Debele also called upon the beneficiaries to take good custody and maintain the tractors to avoid cases of the government withdrawing them. Debele added that the supply of the three tractors to organized farmer groups was the beginning of government attempt to mechanize agriculture and farmers should hope for more.
RDC Peter Debele (center) inspecting one of the tractors before handing it over to the beneficiaries
While addressing the beneficiaries, Percy Mpuuga the Senior Agricultural Engineer Kiryandongo said that mechanization of agriculture through tractors will help farmers improve their household incomes, food security and nutrition in the entire district. He added that the supply of the tractors was in line with the 3rd National development plan which aims at increasing agro industrialization in Uganda which will provide employment, increase productivity, value addition and increased export earnings from agricultural production.
David Onya a nucleus farmer dealing in cassava production who is one of the beneficiaries of the tractors said he hoped to boost his productivity since he was saved from the scramble for the few tractors hire services within the district which has been his greatest challenge. David hopes to add on the equipment he has received from the government and in six months he will have bought a planter.
Livingstone Wandera the human resource officer Equator seed limited thanked the government of Uganda for providing them with a tractor which he said will help in increasing their output and meeting the demands of over 100 cooperatives and contract farmers who have been competing for only one tractor they had.