By: Ismael Kasooha
The Prime Minister of Uganda Rt. Hon. Robinah Nabbanja has rallied the people of Rwenzori sub region in Western Uganda to embrace oil palm tree growing to deal with the increasing prices of cooking oil and soap.
Nabbanja made the call on Friday while presiding over the Kabarole district belated women’s day celebrations at Kaboyo Secondary school in Mugusu.
“Government has come up with both short term, medium and long term interventions to address the increase in prices particularly for cooking oil and soap by having the raw materials used in soap production produced from within the country” said Nabbanja.
The ceremony was organised by the State Minister for Local Government, Hon. Victoria Rusoke who doubles as the Kabarole District Woman Member of Parliament.
Agriculture being the backbone of Uganda, Nabbanja said that oil palm growing in the Rwenzori sub region will boost household incomes and the economy of the country since it will enable Uganda to become self-reliant through import substitution.
”We need to embrace palm oil tree growing to improve on our household incomes and this will in turn boost the economy of our country and enable Uganda to be self-reliant through import substitution,” said Nabbanja.
She said that the Rwenzori region has a favourable environment to grow palm oil trees because of the regular rains in the sub region.
Nabbanja told the hundreds of people gathered that in one acre one can earn over sh4m in a year and the market is readily available.
She said that Uganda currently produces only 20% of the oil palm and the remaining 80% is imported from the Asian Tigers, Malaysia and Indonesia.
She said that the cost to transport raw materials used in the production of cooking oil and soap has doubled leading to increase in production costs consequently hiking the prices of these commodities.
The country has experienced unprecedented increase in prices of soap and cooking oil in the recent past.
The Women’s Day celebrations were attended by the Deputy Attorney General Jackson Kafuuzi, Members of Parliament from the sub region, National Women Council Chairperson Hajjat Faridah Kimbowa, chairpersons and Resident District Commissioners among others.