Saleh, the chairman Operation Wealth Creation [OWC] programme was sharing with NRM members the progress OWC has made in the agricultural sector.
He said more people were needed to develop the country in other areas other than the political space, for example, revitalizing agriculture.
“Why would people fight for 400 political spaces in Parliament yet there is much to do in the development space?” he queried.
He continued: “We need more people in the development space than in the political space. The Political space is very congested.”
Gen Saleh (rtd) also shared his speech delivered during the recently concluded Joint Agricultural Sector Annual Review held at Speke Resort hotel in Munyonyo.
In his speech, Saleh said agriculture was the backbone of the economy in Uganda and that a well-functioning agricultural sector is not only desirable but essential for Uganda’s economic success.
He said Operation Wealth Creation was established by His Excellency in July 2013, to create a system that facilitates effective national social-economic transformation with the focus of raising household incomes to eradicate poverty and sustainable wealth creation.
“Key is that wealth creation is felt by and to the benefit of all the population.”
He said the goals are both ambitious and aspirational but this is exactly what is required for a country such as Uganda that has such opportunities for growth.
“From the outset, the focus of OWC has been to increase the efficiencies within the sector and importantly improve the effectiveness of the coordination and collaboration between the many Ministries, agencies and stakeholders working in the in the Agricultural sector.”
He said this would be achieved through effective coordination and clear communications.
Saleh cited OWC’s key achievements as: Creating a lively debate and reigniting the aspirations for enhanced effectiveness of the agriculture sector, Starting to identify and address the various gaps that exist in the sector including through targeted interventions, which are bringing positive results, Connecting with and mobilized a significant proportion of the population working in the sector and raised expectations as to what can be achieved and Beginning to mobilize the various stakeholders and are starting to streamline their engagement to create a more effective sector.
Saleh said it was also important to liaise with Ministries but at the center were farmers and farming communities which he noted as being central to the objectives of OWC.
“Raising their incomes and livelihoods is at the centre of what we are attempting to achieve and we constantly need to examine the types of support they require and how best this can be delivered.”
He also cited the need to liaise with development partners upon which he announced that OWC had entered a Memorandum of Understanding with the UN World Food Programme (WFP), a key and much valued partner of the Government throughout the country and a partner which will support us in finding solutions in strengthening agriculture.
OWC Head of Communications and Public Affairs, Ms Sarah Kagingo, said the framework of cooperation brings together government agencies, financial institutions, private sector and a development partner for a cohesive approach to the agricultural sector.
“We will draw on the experiences and expertise of WFP in logistics and operations,” Ms Kagingo said.
Hands over OWC to NRM
At the Entebbe meeting, Saleh officially handed over OWC to the ruling party.
He also proposed NRM members who can take over the project now chaired by him to push it forward.
Among those suggested are; the former Vice President, Specioza Kazibwe, former Agriculture Minister, Victoria Ssekitoleko, Rukia Chemondo and a one Kisamba Mugerwa.