Wednesday June 25 2014

Leaders blame failed tea project on division

Tea farmers harvesting.

Tea farmers harvesting. 



Leaders in Mbarara District have attributed the poor performance of the Shs174 million tea growing project in Rwampara County, to lack of harmony and coordination among stakeholders.

During a meeting last Friday, the leaders said intrigue and hiding relevant public information hindered collective planning and implementation of the project.

“The procurement process was not decentralised. Tea plantlets were supplied at exorbitant prices and local community beneficiaries are not involved in planning and verification of the materials,” the district chairperson, Mr Deus Tumusiime, said.

The tea project was launched in April 2012 and plantlets were supplied later in the year by National Agricultural Advisory Services secretariat through a delegated contractor.

President Museveni recently said he would use army veterans to implement Naads after he accused district project coordinators of misappropriating the project.

Leaders said out of 4.1 million plantlets supplied, only 10 per cent survived in Ndeija and Bugamba sub-counties.

Mr Tumusiime advised the stakeholders to be organised, work as a team and conduct regular meetings for monitoring and evaluation to ensure transparency and value for money.

The chairperson of the Rwampara Tea Growing Project and the Rwampara Rural Enterprises Credit and Savings Society Limited, Mr Charles Ngabirano, said procurement of tea seedlings should be decentralised.