Subsistence production root cause of poverty

Tuesday 26th June 2012

President Yoweri Museveni has said that the biggest weakness and the ultimate cause of household poverty in Uganda is having a large fraction of the Ugandan population engage in subsistence agricultural production which largely determines the mode of life wananchi lead that is in consonance and mirror of subsistence way of production. He said modern demands of life go beyond subsistence production and mode of living adding that “whereas it was enough to engage in agriculture for food production and consumption yesterday the modern population needs to do farming for food and as well as an economic activity from which it can derive monetary gain in order to eradicate household poverty.”

The President made the remarks yesterday while meeting youth leaders from Busoga Sub-region who called on him at his country home in Rwakitura Nyabushozi County, Kiruhuura district.

Mr. Museveni challenged the youth to support and embrace government efforts to promote modern agricultural production as the current solution to poverty eradication noting that with over 70% of the Ugandan population employed in agriculture, modernization and commercialization of the sector was the only sure way to cause socio-economic transformation of the Ugandan society.

He said that Uganda in particular and the African continent at large was stuck in poverty because of lack of proper economic focus and a decisive economic ideology. He said that even the developed economies of Europe, struggled for 300 years to make the correct breakthrough and achieve the current development tempo that they enjoy. He, therefore, said that this was the Ugandan and African time to put their priorities right and achieve the desired economic progress.

The President noted that in the case of Uganda, economic growth can be realized through agriculture, industry, offering services, intellectual labour and other unique innovational entrepreneurial skills. He said even if the government provided all other services and the population was not engaged in modern and gainful production, there would be no big miraculous transformation that would be expected to take place.

He told the Busoga Sub-Region youth that agriculture has a big input in the transformation of Uganda only if it is practiced on large-scale commercial basis for people that have extensive land and intensive for those with small pieces. He, therefore, warned them against fragmenting the little available agricultural land in their area in particular and the country at large.

On their part the Busoga youth leaders commended the President for his tireless efforts and commitment to the development and transformation of Busoga Sub-region in particular and the country as a whole. The group further expressed gratitude to him for facilitating their tour of model farmers in Masaka and Kiruhuura districts. The group said the visit has totally changed their mindset.

They asked for support to be able to take up a number of economic activities in their region in commensurate with the land holding mode there and singled out fruits, dairy, poultry, fish farming and goat rearing as the major projects that the youth want to take on as model farmers.

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