The National Agricultural Advisory Services (NAADS) has signed a five-year Memorandum of Understanding with the Inter Religious Council of Uganda (IRCU) with the aim of addressing food insecurity and poverty among the faithful and the general farming population in Uganda. The signing ceremony took place at the NAADS secretariat on November 19, 2020 and was officiated by Hon. Vincent Bamulangaki Ssempijja, the Minister of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries.
The MoU is part of a joint initiative in which ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) are partnering with IRCU to support implementation of the government’s strategic interventions for agro industrialization under the National Development Plan III. This initiative is based on the desire by IRCU to support the government in achieving its agro-industrialization drive through addressing mindset change, spirituality, and low agriculture production, among others.
NAADS will use the structures of IRCU to mobilize, equip and position religious leaders to tackle mindset change towards agro-industrialization
The MoU, therefore, aims to rally religious leaders and their congregations towards agricultural production of priority crops for improved food and nutrition security and incomes and to support Households in agricultural production, postharvest handling and value addition and support linkages to markets in priority agricultural commodities. Sheikh Shaban Mubajje, the Mufti of Uganda and also the chairperson of IRCU, said they will rally all religious leaders and their congregations towards mass agricultural production and improving household incomes.
Whereas IRCU will rally the population towards shared values, vision, togetherness, food security and household incomes using religious institutions as agents of change, NAADS will procure and deliver quality inputs within the planned activities for this initiative. Similarly, IRCU will promote mindset change as a means towards tackling ideological disorientation among Ugandans while NAADS will provide technical backstopping during implementation.
Meanwhile, IRCU’s to mobilize religious leaders and religious groups for sensitization and agricultural skills training will be supplemented by NAADS’ obligation to liaise with other government actors to ensure smooth and coordinated implementation.
Above: Joshua Kitakule, the IRCU Secretary General (L) shares the MoU with NAADS Executive Director Dr. Samuel Mugasa
Above: IRCU chairperson Sheikh Shaban Mubajje (R) signs the MoU with NAADS as its Executive Director Dr. Samuel Mugasa (L) and Joshua Kitakule, the IRCU Secretary General, look on