Government has finalised plans to transfer the National Livestock Research and Resource Institute (NaLIRRI) from Tororo district where it is currently housed to Apac district.
Managed by the National Agricultural Research Organisation (NARO), NaLIRRI is the only institute in Uganda to carry out animal research.
Last year, President Museveni directed that the institute be relocated another place and the land be given to Guangzhou Dongsong Energy Group Ltd, a Chinese investor to carry out phosphate mining and manufacture fertilisers.
Consequently, NARO was given seven square miles of land which is part of the Maruzi ranch in Apac district.
On Friday, officials from NARO went on a guided tour to the area where they expect to construct the livestock research station and later met local leaders.
The meeting held at the Akokororo sub county headquarters attended by the NARO Director General, Dr.Ambrose Agona, Dr.Julius Rutaisire, the director corporate services in NARO together with other officials also had local leaders from APAC including the DISO, DPC and local council leaders.
Speaking to the local leadership, DrAgona told them that the livestock research station had come to their area as a project to spur development in their area.
“You should not have any worries about this project. This is only meant to carry out research in crops, fisheries, livestock and fisheries for the benefit of the local people,”Dr.Agona assured.
“We have come with good intentions of creating a nucleus around which development can start in this area. There is no longer need of your people moving to towns to look for development. Development has come right to you.”
According to the NARO boss, there is a big market for beef and milk in the country but the animal breeds available cannot provide the required amounts to sustain the market.
He said that with the new research station, NARO can now do research in pastures and animal breeds that would benefit locals.
“Avoid being suspicious of us. This is government that has decided to see development extend to your area,”Dr.Julius Rutaisire, the director corporate services in NARO urged the local leaders.
In response, Lt. Freddie Ojuka, who represented the APC RDC applauded government for extending development to the area.
“Some of the locals might be against it but with time, they will come to realise the benefits of the initiative,”Lt.Ojuka told the meeting.
The DISO promised to work with other leaders to sensitise the locals about the benefits of the new project.
The National Livestock Research and Resource Institute was previously called the East African Trypanosomiaisis Research Organisation (EATRO) built by the colonial government in 1956 to carry out a multi-disciplinary research on Trypanosomiaisis.
When the East African Community broke up , the institute was re-named Uganda Tyrpanosomiasis Research Organisation (UTRO) which also changed to Livestock Research Institute(LIRI) handling livestock health and trypanosomiasis .
In 2005 it became the National Livestock Research and Resource Institute(NaLIRRI) under the National Agricultural Research Organisation mandated to handle research in plant and animal health, nutrition, breeding and apiculture.