Uganda’s cabinet meeting will on Monday and Tuesday sit to discuss among many issues, the solutions to the current falling prices in the tea value chain.
This was revealed by the Minister for Local Government, Mr Raphael Magezi while presiding over the inaugural graduation ceremony of JJ Excel College in Bushenyi District on Friday, where about 107 students graduated in various technical, vocational, business, and education-related programmes.
Mr Magezi said that President Yoweri Museveni asked ministers to study the ongoing falling tea prices in the country and report to him on Monday so that the government can find immediate solutions to the crisis.
The Bushenyi District Woman MP, Ms Annet Katusiime Mugisha informed Parliament Thursday that the tea value chain has been hit harder by the crisis with a kilogram of tea going for only Shs200.
“The problem is very huge. People are frustrated. A kilogram used to be Shs560 and it has now dropped to Shs200. We are aware that the government is processing a tea policy, but the government needs to come up with an immediate action plan to help the farmers,” she noted.
Minister Magezi echoed that the situation is unfortunate, noting that during the Monday meeting, the cabinet will address issues of fertilizers as one of the immediate solutions.
“The government has understood the falling tea prices crisis, but as we wait for the cabinet, let us start from here and work on improving the quality of the tea leaf that we produce. We must put in place ordinances and bylaws that will regulate the industry and help us to sell good quality tea,” he said.
This publication has learnt that some frustrated tea farmers in the sub-counties of Kyamuhunga, Bitooma, and Ruhumuro in Bushenyi District have started uprooting tea plants.
Mr Magezi asked the farmers to stop this immediately as the government is going to address the issue as soon as possible.