President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni met and held discussions with Coffee Stakeholders at State house Entebbe this afternoon. The Stakeholders included Coffee Farmers, Traders and Processors.
In giving guidance to the stakeholders, the President said that Uganda should never sell its raw materials without adding value to them, adding that when you sell raw materials you donate jobs to other countries.
“Uganda should produce from the garden to the table, however in the case of coffee it is being produced from the garden to Kampala which must stop” the President said.
The President said that the NRM government has been striving since 1986 to build an economy, which is independent, integrated and self-sufficient. He appealed to coffee stakeholders to join this government effort.
“Before we came to power; we wrote a 10-point program. Point No.5 was about building an economy, which is independent, integrated and self-sufficient. When it comes to coffee, from the beginning I said we should add value to our products and it is still our stand”, he said.
Mr. Museveni gave reference to products like milk and textile which have succeeded in fully adding value to the last product.
“Milk is now covered. We have processed milk and its by-products.
The milk line has moved. Textiles are also moving”, he said.
The President said he was happy to meet with the coffee stakeholders to discuss how they can add value to Ugandan Coffee.
”In every sector; the struggle to get full value addition on our products is on”, he said.
In their presentation by the coordinator, Mr. Robert Kabushenga; coffee farmers, traders and processors want the government to support them to build a factory that will add value to the coffee.
“We are here to get advice from you and to share ideas. Our aim is to ask the government to support our local indigenous companies to add value to our coffee”, Kabushenga said.
Kabushenga said that the group is fully in support of the President’s vision on coffee. “We would like to assure you that we are 100 percent behind you. We want to put a solid coffee plant in Uganda, he said”.
The Director Uganda Vinci Coffee Company, Mr. Ahmed Sultan assured stakeholders of their company’s full support. “We are here to work together and trade with you and increase productivity”, Ahmed Sultan said.
They agreed that stakeholders meet and come up with proposals to the government.
The meeting was attended by the Minister of Finance; Hon. Matia Kasaija and the Attorney General Kiryowa Kiwanuka among others.