Lamwo, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Government has cleared the management of Ayuu Alali Sugarcane project in Lamwo district to source casual laborers from Busoga sub region and Local Defense Unit (LDU) personnel to plant sugarcane.
The Health Minister, Dr. Jane Ruth Aceng announced the decision while visiting the sugarcane project on Wednesday in the company of the Agriculture and Animal Husbandry Minister Vincent Ssempijja and Disaster Preparedness Minister and Lamwo County Member of parliament, Hillary Onek Obaloker.
Dr. Aceng said they were instructed by President Yoweri Museveni to visit the project following the reported complaints on the violation of the Covid 19 prevention guidelines on the sugar plantations.
Initially, Horyal Investment Holding Company Ltd which is implementing the sugarcane project on behalf of Ayuu Alali Sugarcane Cooperatives Society had sought to transport over 400 casual laborers from Kamuli district to help plant over 5,000 hectares of sugarcane.
However, the plan suffered a setback because of the nationwide Covid 19 break out in the country as local leaders opposed the importation of such a huge number of people from outside the district saying it would expose residents to the coronavirus infection.
Mohamoud Abdi Mohammed, the Executive Director Horyal Investment Holding Company Limited revealed that the project had suffered a setback due to inadequate manpower to plant the targeted acreage. He disclosed that between 200 to 600 tons of cane seeds had dried up since last week due to manpower shortage.
In her response, Dr. Aceng said government has cleared the company’s request to import over 400 casual laborers from Kamuli to Lamwo district.
She however said the casual laborers would be screened, tested for COVID-19 and isolated before they are transported to Lamwo district to help bridge the shortage of the labor force.
The Agriculture Minister Vincent Ssempijja disclosed that government has invested huge sums of money in the project and will do the needful to ensure the required 900 workers are recruited to ensure the success of the project.