Food Rights Alliance has urged the Ugandan government to prioritize the distribution of seeds to farmers during this partial Coronavirus (Covid-19) lockdown.
Food Rights Alliance Executive Director Agnes Kirabo made the call.
Kirabo said that many farmers had been receiving seeds through government programmes like Operation Wealth Creation, shops or sending relatives to far off towns like Kampala. However, with the partial lockdown to combat Covid-19, this has become very difficult.
Kirabo said that while the country has experienced good weather for cultivation, Uganda faces food shortage if farmers are not able to plant crops due to lack of seeds.
She warned that this food shortage will have wide ranging implications for the economy and not just the farmers. She said that the country will witness diminished revenue collections across the divide as food sales will plummet due to scarcity.
She urged government to come up with a plan on how farmers can be enabled to access seeds to plant.
President Yoweri Museveni has repeatedly urged that farmers be allowed to work in the gardens during the lockdown. He described farmers who till gardens as already naturally socially distanced who work in an essential field of food provision.
Food Rights Alliance call, however, brings to light the challenge that farmers might not be able to access these seeds because of the limited means of public transportation. All private vehicles are not allowed to transport more than four people while commuter taxis and buses must carry half capacity of passengers.