RUKUNGIRI FARMERS STUCK WITH 30,000,000 TEA SEEDLINGS
By Barak Tukashaba
Over one hundred and four Tea farmers in Rukungiri district are stuck with over thirty million (30,000,000) tea seedlings in their nursery beds.
The tea growers say that in 2015 they were mobilized by officials from National Agriculture Advisory Services (NAADS) to grow tea in the district and that government will buy the seedlings or construct for them tea factory with the district as one way of eradicating poverty from their families.
Farmers upheld the project since they were told that in period
equivalent to one year they will earn at least between fifty seven million and one hundred seventy million if they manage to grow over six million seedlings within the district.
Farmers claim that three years ago with the project the few seedlings they supplied they didn’t pay them, no enough land were to grow tea, and that for those that managed to grow they are yet to pluck but in the district there is no factory.
They also blame district officials for neglecting to support them in terms of guidance and taking their voices to the concerned “they just left us stranded with no help and support with the project yet they are ones always telling us to participate in government project but we are now looking at it as useless to us very few of us with money they are the ones still struggling with the project.” they said.
Apollo Bakamukunda; a tea grower in Rukungiri municipality says that the government left them stranded with the project after they have wasted in a lot of their money and time now they are tired of it even most of them don’t want to hear or listen anything concerning tea.
“I sold my plot to invest in the project because they were telling us that it is beneficial in a period not more than one year but now Iam stuck with over eight hundred thousand seedlings (800,000) in the nursery bed even the few that were distributed were on loan.” Bakamukunda told www.mknewslink.com reporter.
At least one hundred and four nursery beds were raised within
Source: www.mknewslink.com; a western Uganda news website.