By Denish Ongora (email@example.com)
Government plans to distribute 575, 000 kg of oils seeds to farmers in northern Uganda to boost oil seed production.
The Russia-Ukraine war, coronavirus pandemic and the long dry spell have affected oil seed production, leading to a hike in price of cooking oil.
Government through the National Agricultural Advisory Services-NAADS will distribute 75,000kg of soya beans and 500,000 kg of sunflower to farmers under cooperative societies, and large scale farmers in Lango and Acholi.
Dr. Charles Aben, who is in- charge crop development at the NAADS secretariat said 22 cooperative societies in Lango,and 48 in Acholi especially in Nwoya district are targeted under this project.
Addressing leaders of cooperative societies at Lira district production department, Dr. Aben said the targeted farmers will also receive machines for value addition to their products.
The seeds are being distributed to farmers on credit and they will remit 30% of the seeds distributed after harvest.
Nine companies will distribute the seeds and they include; Mukwano, Ngetta tropical holdings, Savanna seeds, United seeds, Equator seeds among others.
However, leaders of some of the cooperative societies in Otuke including Olwit John Bosco Dagama of Patwala Oil seed producers, and Obua Joel of Okwang cooperative society have accused Otuke county MP, Paul Omara who is the proprietor of Ngetta tropical holdings of sidelining other farmers but recruited 26 people who campaigned for him in the last election to benefit from the project.
MP Omara said he was among people who lobbied for this project, adding that such allegations would jeopardize their future lobbying capacity.
Lira district senior agricultural officer Alip Patrick said the seeds have been certified and are viable for growing.