By Ronald Kalyango
The agriculture ministry will register all seed companies and agro-chemical dealers in the country, state minister for agriculture, Prof. Zurababel Nyiira has said.
The minister argued that working closely with the Uganda National Bureau of Standards and Uganda Revenue Authority, they will be able to eliminate fake materials from the local market.
Briefing the media about the status of the country’s agricultural sector at Mosa Courts hotel in Kampala, Nyiira regretted that fake players have continued to ruin the country’s agricultural sector.
“We have received complaints from farmers about companies that have continued to supply them with fake seeds and chemicals, but we are determined to fight them,” said Nyiira.
Though the minister did not specify the actual date for the registration process, he was confident that the move will leave only competent players in the market.
After registration, Nyiira said, the ministry’s inspection team working closely with the farmers will be able to track down the suppliers of fake materials.
He said the penalty for any culprit will be imprisonment and cancelling of their licenses.
Over the years, farmers have asked the ministry to regulate the industry over fake seeds.
“Why has the ministry of agriculture continued to license such companies that don’t have capacity to supply quality seeds?” asked Molly Otim, a farmer in Lira at a recent workshop, which was attended by ministry of agriculture officials.