Six districts from Acholi sub-region are to benefit from a USD150 million (about Shs545 billion) World Bank funded project currently being implemented by the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries.
The districts of Amuru, Gulu, Pader, Kitgum Agago and Nwoya are expected to benefit from the project through an e-voucher system where farmers will receive subsidized agro inputs with an aim of raising farm production and productivity.
Dubbed Agriculture Cluster Development Project (ACDP), the initiative will gradually be rolled out in other 42 Districts across Uganda.
This was revealed by the Minister of State for Agriculture, Christopher Kibanzanga while officiating the project launch in Amuru District.
According to Kibanzanga, Amuru district is one of the five districts where the ACDP project will be piloted across Uganda.
“I want to inform you that this project is for you Ugandans, so let us not fail it. We need to ensure that famers benefit from it. It is the reason why I and my teams are here today. We want to consult you and work with you from the very beginning,” the Minister emphasized.
He explained that the project is designed to raise on farm productivity and marketable volumes of selected agriculture commodities in specified geographical parts of the country.
He also said the project will be implemented in cluster form, that is, Amuru and Ntunguma for grow rice, Nebei (Cassava), Iganga (Maize) and Kalunga (coffee).
ACDP will be rolling out a subsidy programme where farmers will be expected to co-fund purchase of inputs.
In the first season, the farmer will contribute 33% of the cost of inputs while the project will contribute 67%; in the second season both farmers and the project will contribute equally i.e. 50:50; in the third season, the farmer will contribute 67% and project 33%.
It is expected that by the fourth season, the farmer will have matured to take up full cost of his/her inputs.
The ACDP aims at empowering the local people economically through increased household income emanating from increased agricultural production.
The key instrument that will be utilized for the delivery of the ACDP subsidy programme is the highly effective ICT system known as the e-voucher system where farmers will access the inputs electronically.