Bukomansimbi Farmers Reject Gov'ts Maize Price Offer

1786 Views Bukomansimbi District, Uganda

In short
The objection comes days after Ministers Vincent Ssempijja and Amelia Kyambadde announced government plans to buy at least 500,000 metric tons of maize from farmers at 500 Shillings a kilogram, to cushion them against losses as process dwindle. The price has fallen to as low as 200 Shillings a kilogram in several parts of the country.

Farmers in Bukomansimbi district have opposed the government intervention of buying maize grains at 500 Shillings per kilogramme as a way of saving farmers from low market prices.

The objection comes days after Ministers Vincent Ssempijja and Amelia Kyambadde announced government plans to buy at least 500,000 metric tons of maize from farmers at 500 Shillings a kilogram, to cushion them against losses as process dwindle. The price has fallen to as low as 200 Shillings a kilogram in several parts of the country.

However, farmers are protesting that even the government's proposed price of 500 Shillings is too little compared to the cost of inputs, labor and cost of living.

Kigangazzi L.C 1 chairperson Basena Ssemaganda wants the purchase price doubled to at least 1000 shillings. He argues that the government should avoid discouraging farmers from growing the crop.
 
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Farmers George Kabuyet and Francis Ssentongo blamed the government for failing to set minimum prices for local produce, exposing farmers to exploitation by middlemen. Ssentongo challenges the ministry to periodically guide farmers on what crops to plant and their projected prices.
 
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Meanwhile, Hajj Muhammad Kateregga, the Bukomansimbi district chairperson challenges the government to fulfil a commitment to build silos to save the local farmers from uncertainties in prices.  He was speaking during a meeting between Farmers, State Minister for Youths Florence Nakiwala Kiyingi and. The meeting was held at Kigangazzi trading Centre in Bigasa Sub County, Sunday.

Nakiwala pleaded with the farmers to accept government's bottom price as they wait for other interventions that may be proposed.

But Agriculture Minister Vincent Ssempijja slammed farmers for compromising the standard of maize which frustrates government bargain on the international market.

Sempijja explains that even in the proposed intervention government will strictly purchase from farmers whose agricultural produce meets the required standards, adding that they are also coming up with regulations on post-harvest handling.
 
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