I have had opportunity to listen to some Radio Programmes on CBS 88.8 FM regarding improving agricultural productivity, hence fighting poverty and enhancing food security. However, to me, this is like uncoordinated traffic movement! Presenters at the station seem to have liberty to sample people they think can make a contribution to improved agriculture; however, many of these may have concepts that may not help our people. I have heard one such tell listeners that he cannot advise one to cultivate what he/she cannot eat and sell to his/her neighbor.
My advice to the Buganda Government is to undertake Agriculture in a more practical way. This may be done when the Ministry of Agriculture comes up with a comprehensive approach to Agriculture development. Then, have audience with the Presenters and guide them on who can help disseminate useful information via the radio media, then at the same time come up slowly with structures at the ground of the extension officers. These are the people who are best qualified to handle innovations by the agricultural players.
Today, the Government of Buganda is giving Coffee seedlings, but without the extension officers, chances of such innovation may not be that successful. If these seedlings are handed over to an extension officer who has touch with the people, and can follow their work, then positive results can be expected.
In the face of much reduced public expenditure, extension services in sub-Saharan Africa have a daunting challenge: farmers' need for information is as high as ever, but the resources to provide it are meagre at best. Agricultural extension is no longer just about improving yields and producing food - the bottom line is to make money. That is a necessary concept if large numbers of subsistence farmers have to break out of poverty