Traders in Kampala continue to make cries towards the government

Traders in Kampala have continued to make more pleas to the government to let them access their goods which they say are perishable.

The President last month declared a 42 day lockdown that has now seen more than 30 days gone.

This paralyzed all economic activities as shops and arcades were closed in the city centre and other places in the country.

Some leaders led by the lord mayor Erias Lukwago came out and pleaded to the government to let those who wanted to take their merchandise out of the shops take it.

This was however not affected despite the different cries by these traders.

With worry mounting over the traders on rent arrears, perishability of their goods and bank loans, they have come out to make further cries to the government to let them at least let them take out their goods.

Kenneth Ssekitoleko a dealer in women’s merchandise at Gazaland talked of how his goods bear expiry dates and soon they will go bad.

“I sell Vaseline, wigs which all get expired. Most of the thing we sell get to a point and expire. You take them to clients and they simply bounce you. Worse you could have even used the capital in the lockdown. We are crying out to you our dear Prime minister Nabbanja, please devise any solution for us. Help us and talk to our landlords and the banks to atleast give us some more time to pay them or reduce the interest in loans. When we talk to our landlords to get out our merchandise, they tell us to first pay the rent for the months we have not been working.” Ssekitoleko said.

His sentiments were re-echoed by Nicholas Mukasa the spokesperson of the traders under the association of KAFO.

Mukasa said that they have severally tried to access the landlords who locked these arcades.

However, defiance is all they get from them as they won’t open.

Godfrey Kirumira one of the landlords in Kampala however said that the directive to close the arcades was straight from the President.

There is no they can therefore open up since they would be violating the COVID 19 guidelines.

The Minister of lands Judith Nabakooba however while speaking to the media said that the ministry of trade will sit down and talk with the landlords to see how these traders can be helped out.

She added that COVID 19 has affected everyone but the ministries of Finance, Health, Kampala and Trade have been taking place in the engagements to see the way forward.

The RCC of Kampala Hussein Hood also talked about the excessive force police uses while dispersing people in the enforcement of the COVID 19 guidelines in the city.

He also denied having ever given orders to the police to beat up people saying this is a narrative sold by the opposition.

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