President Yoweri Museveni has urged the Operation Wealth Creation (OWC) task force led by Gen. Salim Saleh to sensitize subsistence farmers who have 1-4 acres of land to engage in commercial agriculture for improved incomes.
“Through the Operation Wealth Creation programme that is aimed at eliminating poverty among Ugandans, commercial production and family organization in terms of business is important. That is what I want you to promote in Uganda,’’ he said. He said family organization would help stop land fragmentation practice and boost commercial agriculture production.
The President was speaking at a meeting with the Uganda Peoples Defence Forces officers who are implementing the Operation Wealth Creation programme in different parts of Uganda at State House Entebbe.
The President said that farmers who undertake commercial farming should be able to engage in enterprises such as growing coffee, fruits, tomatoes, onions, mushroom and engaging in poultry, piggery and fish farming among others for both food security and income generation. He asked them to focus on growing perennial crops that are easy to look after when they mature.
The President urged the officers to first deal with the farmers who have little land acreage saying that the government will find a way to help those without land later.
The President said people at the grassroots should first be empowered to come out of poverty by engaging in cost effective income generating projects adding that he wants an approach that is undertaken per parish in implementing the operation wealth creation programme.
He called on the officers to encourage the farmers to concentrate on growing perennial crops like Coffee, fruits, tea among other cash crops. He also urged them to allow the selection of the beneficiaries of the inputs to be done by the people themselves in order to avoid conflicts.
The President emphasized the need for the inputs like the seedlings that are procured by the contractors to be delivered to the farmers at the right season of planting without delay.
The Minister for Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries Hon. Tress Buchanayandi expressed the need for the government to recruit and facilitate extension service providers to give technical support to the farmers. He commended the UPDF officers for the good work done in the distribution of inputs to the farmers.