By Spy Uganda
Kampala: According to a couple of letters seen by this website, the Uganda Coffee Development Authority (UCDA) Managing Director, Dr. Emmanuel Lyamulemye has pulled Uganda and its farmers from International Coffee Organisation (ICO).
The ICO is the main intergovernmental organisation for coffee, bringing together exporting and importing Governments to tackle challenges facing the world coffee sector through international cooperation.
In ICO, member governments, international organizations, the private sector and all other stakeholders meet to address the challenges and opportunities facing the global coffee community, including the development and implementation of strategies to enhance the livelihood and the capacity of local rural communities and smallholder farmers to benefit from coffee production.
However, all the above sounded not so important to UCDA’s boss Lyamulemye who wrote a letter to ICO’s Executive Director, Mr Jose Sette reading thus;
”We refer to document WP Council 316/21 dated 13 August 2021 regarding the International Coffee Agreement 2007 draft Resolution extending the time limit for ratification, acceptance, approval or accession to 1 February 2023 and would like to notify the Depositary that the government of the Republic Uganda will not join the extension of the ICA 2007 beyond 1 February 2022.”
The organization’s member Governments represent 98% of the world’s coffee production and two-thirds of world consumption, providing a unique forum for the global coffee community.
Coffee is exported using ICO certificates that are issued by members countries, therefore it means that Uganda coffee export will be affected and Ugandans won’t be issued ICO certificates since they are no longer members.
Further, according to the National Coffee Act Section 40(3), UCDA is required to profile, grade and certify coffee in line with the international standards issued by ICO and other international standard bodies. Therefore for UCDA to pull out of ICO sounds not only scandalous but also may risk the country losing market at the international level.