Members of Parliament have raised concern over delays by government to distribute seeds to farmers countrywide.
Abim District Woman Member of Parliament, Hon. Janet Okori-Moe raised the matter during a sitting of the House chaired by Speaker Anita Among on Wednesday, 29 March 2023.
She said that it will be unfortunate for government to wait for food shortage and then request for Shs135 billion to address the crisis in Karamoja adding that the country requires only Shs50 billion for the seeds.
“I know your chair [Speaker] is a big one and we know there are people in this country who are big headed but you need to direct that seeds be provided for Ugandans,” said Okori-Moe.
She added that government required only Shs4 billion to procure seeds for two seasons for food security interventions.
“The companies are very ready to supply. Government needs to commit itself the way they did for coffee seedlings which were even very expensive,” Okori-Moe added.
She pointed out that while the seeds were previously distributed under Operation Wealth Creation and National Agricultural Advisory Services, this is now under the Parish Development Model which has not yet kicked off.
Bukooli County Central MP, Hon. Solomon Silwany faulted the Ministry of Agriculture for failing to meet a pledge to distribute the emergency seeds to farmers.
“The rains are almost ending and up to now, the farmers have not got seeds. Speaker, I would like you to direct the minister to come and make a statement,” Silwani said.
The Speaker directed the Minister of Agriculture and Animal Industry to make a statement on Thursday, 30 March 2023.
“We want seedlings, PDM policies are not yet ready,” she said.