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Not easy to disband NAADS – Agriculture Minister

THE state minister for agriculture, Prof. Zurababel Nyiira has told MPs that it may not be easy to disband the embattled National Agricultural Advisory Services (NAADS).

He made the remarks before the Parliament committee on Budget recently while he was defending his ministerial budget for the financial year 2014/2015 at Parliament.

Nyiira said, “The under fire National Agricultural Advisory Services (NAADS) could only be dissolved by Parliament, despite a sustained campaign to disband it.”

He added, “The process to dissolve NAADS  may take two years to  conclude all the legalities that is why winding up NAADS cannot be instant”

Nyiira said that NAADS is a semi-autonomous body formed under NAADS ACT of June 2001, with a mandate to deliver agriculture   service targeting the rural poor substances farmers and people with disabilities.

The contentious debate arose when the committee chairperson Ntenjeru North MP, Amosi Lugolobi put Nyiira to task to explain the legal existence of the defunct institution.

The proposals were seconded by the Tororo county MP, Geofrey Ekanya who insisted that there is a public outcry that many farmers in rural areas including Tororo   don’t understand whether NAADS legally exists or the army has taken its role in Agriculture.

“NAADS has not been dissolved because it is created by an act of Parliament; so, it can be dissolved through the same way, obviously,” Nyiira said.

He explained that the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries. (MAIIF) has formed a task force to carry out its study and it will call public hearing to consult stake holders.

He added, “The task force findings will be reported to Cabinet to amendment of the NAADS Act. When the cabinet is ready with the report it will forward its findings to Parliament for debate and it’s up to Parliament to debate and decide a Bill to repeal the 2001 June NAADS Act.

From New vision