The Minister of Finance, Planning and Economic Development, Hon. Matia Kasaija has pledged to release Shs4 billion for distribution of seed to farmers.
Kasaija made the commitment during the plenary sitting on Thursday, 30 March 2023 following a directive from the Speaker, Anita Among that a statement on distribution of seeds is made.
“I am reliably informed that last season, we needed only Shs4 billion for procurement of seeds for Members of Parliament to distribute to farmers. Let us go and look for the Shs4 billion, give it to the National Agricultural Advisory Services so that you take seed to your constituencies,” said Kasaija.
He added that the suppliers of the seeds will be contacted and distribution points identified.
The Speaker gave Kasaija one week to ensure that seeds are distributed.
“We are giving you a week since it is planting season,” said Among.
The Minister of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries (MAAIF), Hon. Frank Tumwebaze said that even if the money is not availed soon, all that is needed is permission in writing to the accounting officers of National Agricultural Advisory Services (NAADs).
“We will have the people ready on the framework and we will have the distribution per constituency as it used to be,” Tumwebaze said.
He also clarified that procurement and distribution of seeds for all districts is now done under the Parish Development Model (PDM) and not NAADS.
“The budget that was previously used by Ministry of Agriculture and its agencies like NAADs to provide seeds was withdrawn and consolidated to support pillar one under the PDM,” said Tumwebaze.
He said that the money was retained by Ministry of Finance to be disbursed directly to the PDM savings groups.
“Accordingly, MAAIF and its agencies no longer provide seed as a matter of policy and lack of funds,” Tumwebaze said