Aloysius Tumwesigye, a pineapple farmer in Nyanja parish in Maziba Sub County, says they were excited when the plant was commissioned hoping to earn better prices from their harvest. He however, says they are surprised that the plant has remained closed for this long.
Maziba Wine plant in Maziba Sub County in Kabale district is yet to start
operating many years after it was commissioned.
The factory that is located
at Maziba Sub county headquarters was commissioned by President Yoweri
Kaguta Museveni in June 2015 to start producing wine from pineapples
under the supervision of Uganda Industrial Research Institute.
However, URN has learnt from reliable
sources that the factory hasn’t produced any
wine as planned. This follows the dismantlement of the equipment that was
installed in the factory for fear of producing contaminated wine due to high
The equipment was installed before applying Tarazo on the floor
to reduce the humidity. The failure to kick start the operations of the plant has drawn concern from
the farmers, saying it had frustrated their efforts to improve their livelihood
since they are selling their pineapples at a giveaway price.
Aloysius Tumwesigye, a pineapple farmer in Nyanja parish in
Maziba Sub County, says they were excited when the plant was commissioned
hoping to earn better prices from their harvest.
He however, says they
are surprised that the plant has remained closed for this long. Tumwesigye says
they have lost hope of being saved by the factory and are stuck with pineapples
in their gardens.
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Adrian Twesigomwe, the chairperson Maziba Fruit Producers
Cooperative Society Limited that is behind the plant, says they needs capital
of Shillings 188.9 million to start operating.
According to Twesigwomwe, once the money is available they
will able to purchase a standby generator, containers, labels, crowns, saucepans,
computers and sugar among others for the plant to kick start its operations.
Twesigwome says that
they have been struggling to raise funds to pay trained personnel to help in
the production of the wine, security guards as well as construct a
kitchen. Twesigwomwe says they have only managed to collect Shillings
470,000 out of the required money.
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Elison Twinamatsiko, the Maziba Sub county LC V
councilor, says it is very unfortunate that the factory was commissioned for
political capital yet it wasn’t ready to commence production.
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Wilfred Niwagaba, the Ndorwa East County member of parliament,
says he has already liaised with officials from Uganda Industrial
Research Institute to intervene and help the factory to commence operations.