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UGX 98m Rice Hurler Lies Idle in Gulu

Ben Ocan, the Latyeng Farmers Group Chairperson told URN on Friday that the machine have not been operating since it was received three years ago.

Audio 1

A rice hurler is lying idle three years after it was donated to a farmers group in Gulu.

In 2017, Operation Wealth Creation-OWC donated the machine to Latyeng Farmers Group in Bungatira Sub County to process their harvest for value addition. It can hurl 300 bags of rice daily.

The group has over 300 members who averagely grow 700 acres of rice seasonally. 

Ben Ocan, the Latyeng Farmers Group Chairperson, says that the machine has not been operating due to lack of power in the area.  He adds that the group lacks funds to neither purchase a generator nor connect a three-phased transformer.

Currently, farmers hurl their rice from Jamal Rice Millers in Gulu town where they are charged exorbitantly for transporting the rice to the milling site.

According to Ocan a team from OWC and rural electrification surveyed the area two years ago and promised to connect electricity at the site.

Geoffrey Okaka, the Gulu District Chief Administrative Officer asked the farmers group to formally write to his office so that it is forwarded to the National Agricultural Advisory Services-NAADS secretariat to have them connected.   

Geoffrey Anywar, the ACDP Coordinator for Gulu, Amuru, Nwoya and Omoro said that the group applied to benefit from the World Bank-funded project which supports smallholder farmers in the country.   

//Cue in: ‘’for Gulu district… 

Cue out: …rice per acre.’’// 

ACDP is a six-year World Bank-funded project launched in 2015 to support 450,000 farmers from 300 Area-based commodity cooperative enterprises representing 3,000 rural producer organizations growing cassava, coffee, maize, beans and rice in Uganda through the Ministry of Agriculture Animal Industry and Fisheries-MAAIF.