Climatic change and lack of market stressing farmers in Mubende region

The civil society organizations behind the growth of agriculture together with the Norwegian embassy in Uganda have challenged Local government leadership and the central governments through the ministry of agriculture to design policies that will help mitigate climatic change which has impeded the growth of agriculture in the county. Small scale farmers mostly in the country sides are constrained with luck of access to information on how to go through these challenges, yet agriculture is the only source of income and the back born of Uganda’s economy. This was during the sentisation campaign for small scale farmers in Mubende, funded by the Eastern and Southern Africa Small scale farmers’ Forum (ESAFF) in partnernership with the Norwegian Embassy, which climaxed with a trade exhibition that engaged famers from different sub counties in Mubende. 1. Farmers Exhibiting with Kajoba Samuel of the Nowegean embassyThe state of farming is deteriorating due to the changes in climate where seasons have changed but it is discovered that human activities is the root cause, such as deforestation, human settlement in swampy areas and use of modern facilities like pest sides in farming, which can be driven out if district councils come up with bylaws to cattail these activities. The chief adviser at the Norwegian embassy Mr. Kajoba Samuel during this symposium in Mubende said, most of the funding for such projects has been through the government but the embassy opted for direct partnership with small groups giving direct access to indigenous farmers in villages who are affected directly by the results of climate change. “Due to population growth the rate at which dwellers invade wetland is increasing drastically and appealed to district environmentalists need to conduct awareness campaigns before it gets to worse” Kajoba said. The Norwegian government has come up with several programs on tree planting and promotion of indigenous knowledge on Climatic change, but this can be achieved through a supportive legal framework fully implemented and inspected by the respective agencies of government at all levels. “Harvests have gone down in the recent past due to lack of awareness and sentisation drives to expose farmers to new trends of agriculture that can help them use climate-friendly products. Fake firm inputs have risen on market which is a challenge to most famers” Said Beatrice Katsigazi the chairperson of Eastern and Southern Africa small scale farmers’ forum in Mubende. Mrs. Katsigazi says, besides climatic change; agricultural financing in the national and district budget is inadequate. Basic funding to the sector should be at 10% of the total budget in each financial year as agreed upon in Abuja declaration which was ratified in 2006 and Uganda is a signatory, and this should be targeted at key product areas of the sector. She advises government and the ministry of finance to take interest in identifying and support the bodies that are financing agriculture, help farmers’ directly access markets and inputs friendly to environment in various parts of the country. In attendance was the district agricultural officer Mr. James Sssubudde; who assured farmers that immediate measures are to be instituted with immediate effect to save lives in this region. He advised farmers to develop granaries, water harvesting systems and nursery beds to subsidize on the existing western crops on the market that are not friendly to the environment. Most of the pollsters pointed out low consumer demand and price fluctuations respectively, as challenges to address immediately. Some farmers are also not happy with the manner in which the trade system is handled in which Uganda trades in agriculture. “It is right the east African federation provides for an open market to sell produces to member states but our government should practice selling processed products. Let us only sell processed maize flour and leave the maize brand to feed our livestock here” Says Ssentongo George William, a livestock farmer from Bagezza sub county.

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