The minister of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries, Hon. Frank Tumwebaze has appointed a committee of persons with reasonable expertise in the crop and animal husbandries to assess the persistence of growing concerns on the low levels of efficacy of some of the available agrochemicals and acaricides in Uganda.
The committee will help assess the problem, including the prevalent drivers and propose viable interventions towards the issues of quality and the regulatory frameworks of agro chemicals & agro-inputs. Tumwebaze says the team will be supported by a Secretariat at the Ministry who will include technical officers at the Ministry and relevant Agencies.
The committee is composed of Prof. John David Kabaasa as the chairperson. He is Principal, College of Veterinary Medicine, Animal Resources and Biosecurity (CoVAB), Makerere University and a visiting professor at a number of African and Western Universities. Kabaasa will be deputized by Dr. Eve Kasirye Alemu, an International Consultant, Standards, Quality Assurance & Food Safety.
Other members of the committee include; Dr. Stevens Kisaka, a lecturer at Makerere University who will be the Secretary, Dr. Jullian Omalla the Chief Executive Officer, Delight Uganda Limited, Mrs. Beatrice Byarugaba an Agriculture Consultant/Agronomist, Dr. John Nuwagaba, the Chairman, Uganda Veterinary Board and Mr. Hudda Mahmood the Chairman Technical Working Group on Agriculture under the Presidential Investors’ Round Table 6 as Chairman of Added Value.
The others are; Mr. Tayebwa Rutamwebwa the Chief Executive Officer, Mutungo Dairy Training Centre, Dr. Patrick Vudriko from Makerere University, Dr. Ben Ssekamatte a consultant and Ms. Flora Kiconco the Committee Legal Counsel.
They will work with the secretariat team which includes; Dr. Peter Beine, Mr. Fred Mayanja and Ms. Charlotte Kemigyisha.
The committee shall:
- Study and profile the various agrochemicals, acaricides and inputs and their various sources that are available on the market in Uganda.
- Study and profile the supply chain of agrochemicals, acaricides and inputs in Uganda with a view to establish existing gaps and loopholes in policy, regulatory frameworks and usage.
- Study and inquire into the forms of complaints and their probable root causes regarding the quality of agrochemicals, acaricides and inputs from the farmers and other stakeholders in the entire value chain.
- Study and review the appropriateness of the current Government policy, institutional mandates and regulatory frameworks for agrochemicals, acaricides and inputs
- Make recommendations on the necessary reforms that Government needs to undertake in addressing the identified gaps in a sustainable manner.
- Submitting the final report within 90 days; during this period of Lockdown, they will do desk research and review available relevant literature.
On receipt of the final report, the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries (MAAIF) shall formulate a government white paper with clear policy and regulatory reforms that will help to address the identified gaps for Cabinet discussion and consideration.