By Our Reporter
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Thirteen farmers who emerged winners in the 2018 Best Farmers competition are on a learning tour in the Netherlands.
The lucky farmers who set off on Sunday were flagged off by Pius Wakabi Kasajja, the Ministry of Agriculture Permanent Secretary during a ceremony held at the dfcu Head offices last Friday.
Speaking during the ceremony, Pius Wakabi lauded the Best Farmers initiative noting that it is in line with the government’s efforts to transform the agricultural sector and make it more commercialized.
“As government, we are committed to transforming the agricultural sector from being predominantly subsistence to commercial agriculture. I am glad the private sector has picked interest in the sector and is complimenting the government’s efforts,” Pius Wakabi said.
Organised by dfcu Bank in partnership with Vision Group, KLM and the Netherlands Embassy, the Best Farmers competition has been running for five years with an aim to encourage farmers to take up modern methods of farming.
According to Mathias Katamba, the dfcu Bank chief executive officer, Uganda has the potential to become the regions’ food basket if the agricultural sector is fully utilized which would in turn significantly impact the economy.
He further noted that dfcu bank has taken a number of interventions to support the agricultural sector, including setting up the agribusiness development sector which is making efforts towards improving farmers’ skill sets by providing technical support to farmer based organisations.
Held under the theme, “Farming as a business”, the 2018 competition was won by Betty Mbaziira from Isingiro district with Aloysius Lubega from Wakiso district and Julius Bataamye from Kamuli in the first and second runners-up place respectively.
The other winners included: Patrick Ssekimpi (Luwero), Deo Mugisa (Bunyangabu), Shamim Napakol Osekeny (Bukedea), Moses Kiptala (Kween), Vincent Ojok (Lira), Faridah Lutale (Arua), Joyce Acan (Gulu), David Wamai (Manafwa district), John Ruhombe Kamugisha (Kiruhura) and Abel Kiddu (Kampala).