By Yosam Gucwaki
in Masindi—–
Masindi district leadership has petitioned the President of Uganda
Yoweri Kaguta Museveni regarding his policy directive of not allowing
any sugar cane to leave Masindi district.
This was revealed by Cosmas Byaruhanga, the chairperson LCV Masindi
district while speaking to reporter today May 15, 2017 in his office.
Byruahanga says that they are not doing this in bad faith but they
need the president to intervene in the issue of Kinyara sugar limited
failing to crush the excess cane they get from out growers. He
adds that the problem of excess cane which Kinyara cannot crush must
be solved.
Byaruhanga adds  that they have petitioned the president through the
speaker of parliament Rebecca Kadaga noting that they want her to
bring to the  attention of the president that Kinyara has a lot of
cane which it cannot crush noting that this is what is causing the
farmers to be stuck with a lot of cane.

He adds that in the petition they included in evidence of over 1000
farmers whose cane were harvested beyond the contracted age of 25
months adding that  they have also evidence of the farmers whose cane
accidentally got burnt and was rejected by Kinyara.
The petition has stemmed from the presidential directive which was
issued in March to the security agencies in Masindi instructing them
to arrest all the sugar cane poachers in Masindi.
Last months over 10 Lorries loaded with sugar cane were impounded by
police in Masindi district and are still parked at Masindi police
barracks with dried cane. Other sugar buyers were arrested and forced
to offload cane at Kinyara sugar factory without being paid.
Byaruhanga adds that during an extra ordinary council meeting held on
the 4th of May 2017, resolved that that all farmers without loans with
Kinyara should be allowed to sell the excess cane outside Masindi
district since Kinyara is also selling cane to Hoima district.
He adds that this is in the same position with the farmers’ council
following the meeting which was held on Saturday last week at Kinyara
secondary school noting that the farmers’ council want Kinyara to give
a fair price of not less than 165000 per ton for this financial year
Byaruahanga explains that if this is accepted by Kinyara   this will
that all the farmers who sold cane this financial year will have to
get arrears on top of the 100818 per ton which they Kinyara has been
giving to farmers per ton  per ton.
He adds that all this is arising from the great price difference
between Busoga region and Bunyoro region saying that in Bunyoro a ton
of sugar cane is being bought at   100818 while in Busoga is at
170,000 adding that this is in consideration of escalating sugar
prices saying a kilo of sugar is at 7000 shillings.He explains that if
this price is improved will relieve farmers of the losses.

Other problems sugar cane farmers complain of include; delayed
payment, corruption by Kinyara staff, spillage and farmers failing to
access the weigh bridge among others.

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