The Chairman and Chief Coordinator of Operation Wealth Creation Gen. Caleb Akandwanaho allias Salim Saleh has enhanced tea production in the western districts of Kabarole and Kyenjojo with a working capital of shs 1.5 billion.
In his tour of Operation Wealth Creation Projects in the Rwenzori regions, General Saleh also visited Mabale tea factory, the leading tea factory in region.
In the meeting with the management of the factory, a number of challenges were disclosed.
It was revealed that the factory has got capacity for high production to a tune of 100.000kgs but can only afford to produce 20.000kgs due to less working capital that can enable to buy all the green leaf from out growers in the region.
In response, Saleh said that government will provide shs 1.5bn to the factory to enable it buy all the leaf from the out growers.
“The 1.5bn is working capital meant to absorb the green leaf produced by farmers,” general Saleh said.
The Operation Wealth Creation boss also added that farmers have over planted tea therefore factories should be able to buy off all the produce.
According to Patrick Ssisa, the General Manager of Mabale Tea Factory, out growers both in Kabarole and Kyenjojo districts have so far planted 24 million tea seedlings provided by Operation Wealth Creation.
In the event, the management of the major factory in the region reported to Salim Saleh that the Ministry of Finance have declined to act on the presidential directive to bail out the company as it has been stuck in a shs15 billion debt for the past ten years.
However, general Saleh promised to make a follow up on the issue saying that “failure by the Finance Ministry to obey the presidential directive has created mistrust between government and people of Kyenjojo.”