There are about 10,694 parishes in the Republic. At this current time there are 4,000 tractors in both private and public ownership. Some of these are said not to be operational. However we don’t have an exact amount of working tractors or farming equipment that is working.
The golden boy of the regime and unopposed MP, Minister Frank Tumwebaze has a statement on the performance of the Tractor Scheme. We have seen the performance of Tumwebaze in the past. As the man tried to get everyone to register their SIM-Cards and unleash the 200 shillings tax OTT services on their smart-phone devices. So, we know the man is working and been a loyal subject of the National Resistance Movement.
Now that his the Minister of Agriculture, Animal Industry & Fisheries has released a statement on the 18th August 2022 about the Tractor Scheme. So, the newest idea of the NRM is to buy more tractor and get one in every parish. That’s to beat army-worms and combat food insecurity. The idea itself isn’t foolish or dumb in any sense. However, how will this government ever make this happen? Who will fund it and where will find the organizational skills to make it happen?
Because, the NRM regime has all the programs of the books. They have schemes and ideas out of this world. Nevertheless, over the years we have seen them turn into get-rich-schemes of the chosen elite and little-to-none service delivery. Should we think any different of this one? No, it is a continuation of others.
That’s why the statement of Tumwebaze mentions the SACCOs. NAADs, OWC and the newly minted Parish Development Model (PDM). The PDM that haven’t become functional or working of yet.
In addition, the Minister acknowledges that the Cabinet approved the operationalization of 19 Zonal Agricultural Mechanization/Irrigation Centres. However, by the time of the statement only 3 of these was operational and 2 are in the works. So, there is a long time before all the larger regions has this even. These are supposed to be up and be place of workshops, repair and get maintenance skills. Which is all a fine idea too, but shows how slow this process is.
In the medium term, the Tractor Scheme needs not only to make 16 Zonal Agricultural Mechanization/Irrigation Centres operational. They need to find funds and get tenders to buy at least over 6,000 tractors, which needs to be donated or designated to each parish.
What is also making this more expensive the need for monitoring device and software to be able to follow up on the usage of the tractors donated to the parishes. This is surely meant as a supplement and to advance the agricultural sector.
However, I wonder if Tumwebaze ever studied the Soviets, because this sort of out of their play-book: “Conceived as a voluntary union of peasants, the kolkhoz became the dominant form of agricultural enterprise as the result of a state program of expropriation of private holdings embarked on in 1929. Operational control was maintained by state authorities through the appointment of kolkhoz chairmen (nominally elected) and (until 1958) through political units in the machine-tractor stations (MTSs), which provided heavy equipment to kolkhozy in return for payments in kind of agricultural produce” (Britannica – kolkhoz).
That didn’t add more produce or make the production of the agricultural produce in the Soviet Union. These sorts of entities crippled the Kolkozy and the leaders tricked their numbers. So, this actually caused famine and more hardships.
We can wonder, if Tumwebaze ever looked into that or even cared to see how it worked. It is sort of ushering in the mechanical agricultural revolution by the parish model. In such a manner, that can be seen as similar to the ones of the Soviet.
There are so many questions to this… not only the funding and the supposed operation of it. After that… how is the oversight? What are the goals? Are it to buy over 6,000 tractors and that’s it? What happens after that?
If there is no plan or sort of objective after that. What does it really do? Except making the MAAIF busy and have something to say in Parliament. Peace.