MP-elect Dokolo North Constituency Hon. Moses Ogwal Goli is leading a campaign to ensure that livestock farmers in Northern Uganda grow cassava on a large scale for animal feeds to improve their livelihoods.

Hon Ogwal (R) and other trainees compiling grass for silage after cutting

Mr. Ogwal has pledged to  utilize the constituency development fund   to create Livestock feedlot centers per parish to train farmers and  promote supplementary feeding in livestock in Northern Uganda.

Hon. Ogwal noted that Northern Uganda has been promoting NARO Cassava (NARO CAS 1 and NARO CAS 2) which has been adopted in Dokolo constituency.

“We have been promoting cassava and I intend to continue promoting cassava so that we can use it for feeds. We have been advised that the cassava we are growing has 6% protein and starch but more importantly, the leaves have more than 26% protein. We are going to be able to get cassava and cassava leaves, dry, grind, and mix with soybean to a formulation to support the feed industry and also get the market”, Hon. Ogwal said

The new MP elect was speaking during the training   of livestock beef Farm Managers and Trainers of Trainers (TOTs) from ten districts of the Central and Western Cattle corridor at Robran Holdings Limited (RHL) facility in Buwanuka Wakiso district.

The Nucleus farm managers and the TOTs were in Wakiso for the hands-on training on crush construction, fencing and other animal handling facilities for Feedlotting animals. The training was held under the auspices of the Promote Supplementary Feeding (SUPPL-F) project.

SUPPL-F project is part of the Developing a Market –Oriented and Environmentally Sustainable Beef Mea Industry in Uganda(MOBIP), which is a Government of Uganda programme supported by the European Union under the overall supervision of the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries(MAAIF).

Hon Ogwal (R) and other farmers attending training on making Urea Molasses blocks at MUARIK

The project is being implemented by the Private Sector Foundation Uganda (PSFU) in partnership with Robran Holdings Limited (RHL), Makerere University College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (CAES), The Livestock Development Forum(LDF) and the Green Elephant (TGE). The affiliates are the PSFU members including the Uganda Women Entreprenuers Association Limited (UWEAL) and the Uganda Beef Producers Association (UBPA).

Till recently Hon. Ogwal Goli  has been the Director  of  Private Sector Development at the Private Sector Foundation Uganda (PSFU) and during that time, they were able to develop this project  to support the development of the feed sector through supplementary feeding   with the aim of improving the quality of lives particularly the young people.

He said the project was designed in such a way that it supports the cattle corridor area. As an individual, Ogwal moved on to campaigns and is currently the MP elect for Dokolo North constituency.

“I was impressed with that while I was working with PSFU, but now, I am more impressed as a leader that people’s income must change. So, I have come here to see practically how it is done, and I am going to participate.

PSFUs Daniel Ojiambo, Hon. Ogwal Goli, Dr. Justine Nambi and the Rep of Green Elephant after making the Urea molasses blocks at MUARIK

In this training, I have actually come to follow up what I left   to see how it is moving but also acquire knowledge which I will use sustainably for development and furthering it to the rest of the country.

I will particularly be interested in how to further this in the Northern country of Uganda as an individual and farmer and how to ensure that I support the youth and women. The aim is improving where they are, they are mainly crop people, how do you work based on their crops. They are doing oilseeds, cassava to support the feedlot system so that the income levels increase”. Hon. Ogwal stated.

Hon. Ogwal reported that in the study they (PSFU) carried out earlier, it was found that if a farmer is    working on cereals, maize or  cassava , the maximum income  one can get is about  shs.1.5 million per year describing  this as very little.

“However when you come to an investment of money between 1-5 years which is mainly in livestock including the feedlot technology, your income can raise up to 130 million within a period of 18 months.  Then you have to consider investments in three years in fruit trees which can take 15 years and you will earn about 30 million per year. 

Hon Ogwal during the practical session clearing the feedlot site at Buwanika Wakiso district

To me now as a community leader, I am trying to see how to transition investments from the lower level of investing 90 days to come to cross the level of 1 to 5 years and then  jump three to fifteen years and you will see  how crops are interrelated with livestock.” Hon. Ogwal stated

In this training Hon. Ogwal said, they have been taught the supplementary feeding for 90 days investment with adoption of the feedlot technology which will make farmers income improve.

Ogwal explained that farmers can ably utilize animal waste like cow dung and urine to set up investment of 3-15 years in fruit trees to see a complete chain so as to earn more than shs. 25million in a home hence transforming their livelihoods.

The MP said the cry for the lack of market for agricultural produce does not hold on grounds that  a farmer  is a market for a fellow farmer  through supporting the livestock market  and  going another step  to produce animals.

Hon. Ogwal stressed that his ambition is to strategically position Northern Uganda to tap into the oil sector.

“The market is to be provided by the oil sector and let us contribute to the development of the oil sector. As a leader, I want to prepare Northern Uganda to supply milk, eggs, and beef in the development of the oil sector. I f we don’t meet the demand, the supply will come from outside” The MP said.

To achieve this, Hon. Ogwal said, he will utilize the Constituency Development Fund to create a feedlot center per parish to train farmers and promote supplementary feeding in livestock.

Ogwal also said he is the process of clearing communal land of about 40 acres in Dokolo  to set up a demonstration farm. The land he said will be used to grow hybrid grass species and cassava for farmers to learn and adopt the practice on their land.

The MP plans to liaise with MAAIF, cattle ranchers and scientists to help farmers identify and promote elite breeds of cattle through Artificial insemination technology for improved production and productivity.

Hon Ogwal (R) attending the practical training on feedlot structure construction at Robrans Holding in Wakiso

Makerere university lead instructor on animal handling facilities for the feed lot system Dr. Joachim Idibu also Assistant lecturer in the Department of Agricultural Production said, Uganda has a deficit of beef production, producing less beef and beef of poor quality in terms of tenderness, softness and marbling quality.

Dr. Idibu said Uganda produces less beef because animals take three years to reach the market and slaughter stage.

“One way of increasing beef production is to ensure that animals grow very fast within two years you are able to sell off your animal. One way can be through improvement of animal breeds but the other is through proper feeding and nutrition”, Said Dr. Idibu.

Dr. Idibu was speaking at Robran Holdings Limited in Wakiso district where farm managers and Trainers of Trainers (TOTs) had turned up for the practical training on the basic skills to establish a feed lot structure for feedlotting animals.

The Robran Holdings Limited was setting up a Feedlot structure for about 100 animals to become a training center to promote supplementary feeding for livestock farmers, the youth and women.

Hon. Ogwal, Mr.Daniel Ojiambo and Dr. Vincent Lutwama during the training at MUARIK

“A feed lot is where you bring a young animal about one-year-old, bring them to the feed lot structure where they are properly fed such that they reach market age very fast. When they reach the market age very fast, it means every year you move more animals for slaughter and as you feed them properly, even the quality of beef improves, and one, it will be tender, and two in terms of marbbling it will be good in terms of international standards”, Dr. Idibu explained.

He said, once farmers adopt feedlotting, the number of animals to remove from the rangelands will increase. And once the number is removed the stocking rate is reduced on ranches which also minimizes land degradation due to over stocking.

Hon Ogwala (with a panga) participating in site clearing for feedlot structure construction at Robrans holding in Wakiso

Then to a farmer, as s (he) is able to finish animals very fast and supply every three to four months to the butchery, it means the farmer will be earning more money because he is able to sell many animals per year than when animals are finished on grasses.

Dr. Idibu also said the feedlot technology will also have some ramifications on the industry in that, those going to produce feeds for feedlotting are able to supply more feed and create more jobs in the feed industry so that Uganda will have opportunity for job employment in the industry for those supplying feeds.

Farmers whose cassava or maize is fetching less money, will be consumed as part of the feeds, create market for grain producers for those formulating the feed rations and also the butcher men will be able to get quality animals of international standards and the nation can be able to supply even to the Middle East.

Report compiled by:
Jane Anyango,
Principal Communication Officer,
College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (CAES)
Makerere University

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