High population growth in Kyenjojo district is causing scarcity of agricultural land, farmers say. Tea and maize are the major crops grown in the district but farmers are facing difficulties growing the crops on a large scale because of the scarcity of land.
High population growth in Kyenjojo district is causing scarcity of agricultural land, farmers say.
Tea and maize are the major crops grown in the district but farmers are facing difficulties growing the crops on a large scale because of the scarcity of land.
Large chunks of land are being occupied by the Bakiga and Banyarwanda immigrants from Kabale and Rwanda, while in some families, there is no land remaining, because structures have been built to accommodate larger families.
Some of the farmers are forced to look for land for hire but they are let down by the high costs charged by the landlords.
Statistics at the office of the district planner indicate there are 450,550 people in the district, compared to last year when they were 337,300 people. The 2002 national census put the population of Kyenjojo District at about 266,250. The annual population growth rate was estimated at 3%.
In Bufunjo, Nyantungo and Nyakwanzi sub counties, the areas known for tea and maize growing, the farmers there are in desperate search for agricultural land to increase on food production.
Moses Mwesige, a maize farmer in Nyabani parish in Nyakwanzi sub county says that he is stuck with 50 kilograms of maize seeds because he has no where to plant them.
Mwesige says that he is left with no piece of land after he constructed on it a house to accommodate his big family of 10 children and other relatives.
He says that he had planned to grow on other chunks of land, but he can’t afford the costs because they are high.
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In Nyantungo, some farmers have abandoned growing tea and maize, and resorted to rearing poultry, piggery and goats as a source of income.
Beatrice Kobwemi, a farmer in Nyantungo says that she will not harvest in the next season citing lack of enough agricultural land. She says that the remaining piece of land has been used to construct a house for her large family.
Kobwemi argues that the government should limit on the number of immigrants in the district because the land they are occupying would have been an alternative for the farmers.
Moses Baguma, the district production coordinator says the department plans to lease out 6 acres of land to the maize and tea farmers who want to increase on their produce.