President Museveni Tours Nwoya Rice Farms

2455 Views Nwoya, Uganda

In short
President Yoweri Museveni says the absence of electricity in many of the countryside commercial farms is frustrating investors by driving up cost of agribusiness in the country.

Government will extend electricity to all commercial farms in the countryside to facilitate agro processing and value addition.

President Yoweri Museveni says the absence of electricity in many of the countryside commercial farms is frustrating investors by driving up the cost of agribusiness.

While touring FOL farms in Lamoki village, Anaka Town Council  on Saturday, the President said transporting raw produce for processing and value addition is costly to investors. He said he will ensure that all farms are granted access to reliable electricity as soon as possible. 

FOL Farms which sit on 3,000 acres of land is owned by a group of investors from Dubai in the United Arab Emirates. The company specialises in large scale mechanized cultivation of Nerica-4 rice which it exports to Dubai and other countries on 14,000 acres of land leased around the country. 

Stephen Byandala, the farm's agronomist told President Museveni that they are facing threats of drought with about 1000 acres of rice. He said they have resorted to irrigation to save the premature rice requiring three more occurrences of heavy rainfall to eventually mature. 

Akos Zolb, the managing director of FOL Farms says they process the rice they produce at a milling plant they built in Namanve industrial area at 25,000 tonnes per day while they harvested 45,000 tonnes in the first season. 

President Museveni who had earlier toured the plant in Namanve before flying to Nwoya district addressed residents of Anaka Town Council from the farm. He told them to engage in high value crops and livestock farming in their small holdings.

Mohamed Ahmed, the Executive Director of FOL Farms Uganda said the country's impressive population growth should be harnessed for food security, revenue and development.

Patrick Okello Oryema, the Nwoya district chairperson told President Museveni that most investors in the district acquired on average 8,000 acres of leased lands for setting up their farms.

According to Oryema, all the farms are lacking electricity.