By Olandason Wanyama
The government has reintroduced the tractor hire scheme, in efforts to ensure Karamoja achieves food security.
The initiative arrives at a time the sub-region is hit by chronic food shortage, resulting from increased cattle raids, climate change and the effects of the locust invasion.
Presiding over the launch on Saturday at the Lokapel UPDF detachment in Nabilatuk district, the Minister for Agriculture, Frank Tumwebaze, urged the farmers to embrace the affordable hire scheme.
He said it was time to see Karamoja increase food productivity aimed at eliminating hunger at household level.
What the youths said
On behalf of the youths, the district youths councilor for Nabilatuk Kevin Hilda Nakiru appealed to the Ministry of agriculture animal industry and fisheries-MAAIF to ensure the scheme is affordable to the youths.
She said the youths had resorted to stealing animals due to lack of income generating initiatives.
“If an acre can be ploughed at Shs 50,000 – Shs 70,000 this could be affordable,’ Nakiru noted, adding that most youths are now reeling from poverty.
She further added those who picked the Emyooga money were even failing to remit the funds to the finance centres.
Nakiru says that now that tractors are available there is a need to embark on mindset change so that the youth can become better and responsible persons in society.