No production record, no 99-year farm lease: Minister

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LANDS and Agriculture minister Anxious Masuka

BY SHARON BUWERIMWE
LANDS and Agriculture minister Anxious Masuka has ordered farmers resettled under the A1 and A2 models to submit their annual productivity returns to qualify for 99-year lease agreements.

In a statement, Masuka said the move was meant to speed up the processing of the leases.

“The current policy position on the issuance of the 99-year leases is that offer letters or land permit holders under the A2 resettlement scheme may apply to the minister for the issuance of 99-year leases.

“In pursuit of the ease of doing business and as a consequence of the need of A1 and A2 farmers to submit mandatory annual production and productivity returns, with immediate effect, these returns will now be used to assess the readiness of a farmer to qualify for the issuance of a 99-year lease without the farmer having to apply for the lease.”

Masuka said linking annual productivity returns to 99-year leases would enhance efficiency and eliminate bureaucracy.

“It will enhance ease of doing business, cost of reduction, elimination of bureaucracy, streamlining operations and enhancing efficiency, while motivating and priming farmers for higher productivity, as we journey towards vision 2030.

“This is in line with our on-going agricultural transformation. This aims to transform A2 farmers to become perennially successful businesspeople through enhanced security of tenure,” he said.