Former Tanzanian President Kikwete Drums Up Agricultural Transformation In Uganda

KAMPALA, Uganda: August 30, 2021 – Former President of the United Republic of Tanzania H.E. Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete on Monday ended his three-day tour of Uganda, during which he held high-level deliberations on prioritizing inclusive agricultural transformation to promote resilient and sustainable food systems ahead of the AGRF Summit 2021.

During the visit, H.E. Kikwete, who is also a member of the Board of Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA), held talks with Uganda’s President H.E. Yoweri Museveni on Africa’s food system priorities.

Former Tanzania President Jakaya Kikwete and President Museveni at State House

President Museveni pledged his commitment and that of his country to harmonising ideas on achieving food security. H.E. Kikwete further invited Uganda’s President to the AGRF Summit 2021 which will take place in Nairobi, Kenya from September 6 -10.

H.E. Kikwete inspected the work of Zirobwe Agaliawamu Agri-business Training Association (ZAABTA) in the Luwero District, 61km north of the capital Kampala, where he witnessed, first-hand the impact of AGRA’s investments in the country.  An association of 1,700 mostly-youth farmers, ZAABTA is supported by AGRA through the Regional East Africa Community Trade in Staples project (REACTS) project.

ZAABTA’s youth members, christened the “Nokia youth”, are trained on good agricultural practices, and are now able to offer specialized services to farmers in their regions for a daily pay of about USD10, in a country with a minimum monthly wage of USD5, according to the International Labour Organization.

Other members of the association have been trained in post-harvest handling and processing using equipment such as maize shellers, to improve the quality of grain. These youth play a critical role in aggregating produce (rice, maize, beans) for off-takers to purchase easily.

So far, the group’s members have increased storage capacity from under 50 metric tons to now over 1,500 metric tons and are now making major advancements in processing, drying, and packaging.

The AGRF 2021 summit is organized under the leadership of H.E Uhuru Kenyatta, and the AGRF Partners Group, under the theme, “Pathways to Recovery and Resilient Food Systems”,

It is expected that over 10,000 delegates will join the hybrid event virtually, as close to 150 delegates gather in Nairobi for the Summit, among them heads of state and government, ministers, and high-profile leaders from the private sector.

Among other objectives, the Forum will give the continent a final chance to review and affirm Africa’s common position before joining the rest of the world at the UN Food Systems Summit, in New York.

Established in 2006, AGRA is an African-led and Africa-based institution that puts smallholder farmers at the center of the continent’s growing economy by transforming agriculture from a solitary struggle to survive into farming as a business that thrives. Together with our partners, we catalyze and sustain an inclusive agricultural transformation to increase incomes and improve food security for 30 million farming households in 11 African countries by 2021.

The AGRF is the premier forum for African agriculture, bringing together stakeholders in the agricultural landscape to take practical actions and share lessons that will move African agriculture forward. The Forum is designed to energize political will and advance the policies, programs and investments required to achieve an inclusive and sustainable agricultural transformation across the continent.

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