Hundreds of farmers working in close collaboration with Ngetta Tropical Holdings, a leading oil seed producing company in Northern Uganda have expressed happiness and optimism following the introduction of new digitalized payment systems where farmers who supply grains receive money directly into their mobile money wallets or bank accounts as opposed to the traditional cash transactions means.
In January 2018 Ngetta Tropical Holdings embarked on a digital registration of its farmers in Northern Uganda under the farmers cooperatives into a customized application system dubbed Ngetta agro base systems and by the end of the year, about twenty five thousand (25000) farmers had been fully registered while digital profiling continue.
The system developed in partnership with application based giant Mobipayagrosystems was essentially to help in electronic payment of farmers, storage of robust data of farmers to enhance their traceability and financial inclusiveness where farmers are made bankable.
On Friday last week, Ngetta Tropical Holdings officially commissioned the usage of the system where a host of farmers from Puranga cooperative society (pioneer group) in Pader district who had supplied their grains to NTH were paid using the electronic system and their cash wired direct to their mobile money accounts amidst excitement and joy from the farmers.
The chief Executive officer of Ngetta Tropical Holdings Mr Paul Omara said, that the launch of the NTH agro payment systems will transform forever the agricultural modernization in northern Uganda .He emphasized that this will allow the farmers to save and keep their transaction history which will also take away the risks of carrying cash and allow individual farmer to receive their money electronically.
According to Omara, the grand plan is to bring over three hundred thousand (300000) farmers onto this platform within two years as about 2.3 million household members lives are touched.These will cover the farming communities in Lango, Acholi, Teso, West Nile, Sebei and Bunyoro sub regions.
The chairperson of Puranga Cooperative Wilfred Okello (53) says the new development is a great initiative as it will eliminate completely the risk of loss of huge sum of cash during transit to the farmers for distribution.
Okello said, this will also help propel investments in the communities as some people including him are already preparing to open up mobile money merchant outlets to ease transactions by the farmers.
Akao Miriam (38) who received cash through the systems says this digital system will be more beneficial to them because it will enhance financial empowerment of rural women as the technology transfers money direct into their mobile money accounts as opposed to the past times where their husbands sell the grains produced and pocket the money excluding them out.
She noted that this innovation will build a good tendency of saving culture amongst the farmers as the mobile money wallet can also be used for saving money.