Friday, July 19, 2024
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Jinja Residents Protest Relocation of Agricultural Shows to Luwero’s Bukalasa College

The Jinja city woman MP,  Manjeri Kyebakutika holds a sheet containing some of the signatures.

Jinja residents have held a peaceful protest against the move by Uganda National Farmers’ Federation-UNFFE, to relocate the national students’ agricultural exhibition to Bukalasa agricultural college in Luwero district.

Led by the Jinja city woman member of parliament, Manjeri Kyebakutika, the residents say that this exhibition is a platform of diverse skills extension to learners in Busoga sub region and the entire country as a whole.

Following the ongoing roll-out of the new curriculum, ministry of education partnered with their counterparts in the agriculture ministry to offer practical skills to learners at different levels.

The learners from different schools were to converge for a period of one week annually where they would hold direct interactions in different sectors ranging from agribusiness, ICT to banking, among other industries, which would overly offer them a platform to develop job creators’ mindsets in their teenage years.

Students could also benchmark the suitability of their products and jointly synergize on how to better their products to suit the market demands and preferences.

Kyebakutika says that the current agricultural showgrounds has ample space with already established agribusiness players dealing in manufacturing, research, poultry, aquaculture, animal grazing, among others, which offers learners with a holistic study environment to internalize the piecemeal classroom skills.

Kyebakutika argues that the national agricultural students’ exhibition is a product designed for Jinja city, which last year fetched local revenue amounting to 2.5 Billion Shillings and shifting it to another location will affect the overall incomes of small scale traders in the area.

Kyebakutika further says that, she plans to push for parliamentary interventions to ensure that the national agricultural students’ exhibition remains a sole product of Jinja city and Busoga region as a whole since it does not only contribute to the overall skilling of learners, but also earns reasonable incomes for the people.

In this, Kyebakutika says, she has already collected 5,000 signatures from different stakeholders in Busoga sub region to back her petition before parliament.

Kyebakutika has since called on parliamentarians to support her bid of ensuring that the Jinja agricultural grounds is maintained as a primary exhibition center for both learners and adult audiences across the country.

Meanwhile Sseguya Musisi, a poultry breeder within the agricultural grounds, says that the annual interface with learners is key in rolling out first-hand skills to future generations for posterity, rather than ‘overconcentration’ on adult audiences, most of whom show little interest in adapting to the dynamics of the industry.

Annette Nankya, a fruit farmer, says that through the previous study exhibitions centering on learners in the last three years, they have been able to set up 150 orchards in different schools across the country, with the aid of majorly students themselves – thanks the skills earned.

On his part, the agricultural show manager Peter Kisambira says that UNIFFE is working out means of harmonizing with responsible stakeholders to allow room for the students exhibition to be held between 24th and 29th June.


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