Uganda is phasing out its public extension system and replacing it with a ‘private service provider advisory’ system. However, there is no evidence that the new extension system will be more effective than the one currently being phased out. This paper reports on a case study conducted in Mukono District to assess the new system’s effectiveness in engendering grassroots participation and control of the extension agenda. Data on the process of identifying farmers’ needs was collected through observation of the enterprise priority-setting and selection meetings. In addition, 120 farmers were surveyed for their perceptions of the new system. The paper discusses how the farmers’ needs were identified and prioritised for delivery of extension services under the new system, and what farmers felt about it. The paper also highlights problems experienced in translating the system’s lofty objectives into reality, and draws lessons for the new system as it covers more districts.
B. Obaa, J. Mutimba and A.R. Semana