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Hoima tobacco Farmers protest irregularities in verification exercise ahead of payment

He says, according to the experts and thorough consultations from their lawyers, it is illegal that the farmers have to surrender their original receipts to the team and only photocopies should be released.

HOIMA, UGANDA: The Hoima district tobacco farmers have protested the methods being used by a team of government officials who are verifying the particulars of the over 1000 farmers ahead of their payment.

Earlier this year, The Prime Minister, Rt. Hon. Robinah Nabbanja revealed that the ministry of trade industry and co operatives had sent a team on ground to verify bank accounts and mobile money details of farmers who are demanding payments of Tobacco Leaf supplied to Continental and Nimatabac tobacco companies between 2007 and 2009.
Vincent Byagira the farmers’ mobilizer to Nimatabac who recently went to court protesting delayed payment of their money says that the team which was sent on ground for verification are taking away their original receipts.

He says, according to the experts and thorough consultations from their lawyers, it is illegal that the farmers are surrendering their original receipts to the team and only photocopies should be released.

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“We shall not allow the team sent by the ministry of trade industry and cooperatives to continue with the verification exercise of farmers’ particulars until the irregularities in the exercise are resolved because they are taking away our original receipts yet we are supposed to give them photocopies according to the consultation from our lawyers and experts”. Mr. Byagira said.

Peter Isingoma a farmer representative from Kigorobya Sub-county in Hoima District says he is skeptical about the taking away of the original receipts adding that they might miss payments since they have no proof.
“Having an original receipt is a proof to the government that a certain farmer was not paid but these people are taking away our original receipts am uncertain whether we will receive our payments since we won’t be having demand receipts”. Mr. Isingoma said.

Godfrey Kaheeru a farmers representative from Buseruka sub county says it is not right to take away their receipts and called on Hoima District leaders to come out and clarify on the issue.


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