By Mary Asujo
The Speaker of parliament, Rebecca Kadaga on Tuesday, directed that government comes to parliament and brief the country on what action is being taken on matters concerning the Kenyan ban on Ugandan products.
Kadaga’s directive follows a concern raised by Busia Municipality MP, Geoffrey Macho that Kenya has abused the kindness of Ugandans and continued to go about their business without any problem. The concern came as a matter of national importance during the 15th plenary sitting on Tuesday.
Macho said that it was sad that over 100 trucks carrying maize have been stopped at the border from entering the produce into Kenya saying that most of the traders have invested a lot of money but have instead reaped losses.
“We shall take our resolutions whether the government comes here or not. The clerk should take note of Hon. Macho’s proposals for reciprocation.” Speaker Kadaga said
In response, several legislators including Kasambya County, Luis Gaffa Mbwatekamwa expressed fears that it’s unfortunate that the people of Mubende will suffer since most of them depend on maize trading business. The MP also questioned the relevance of the regional community.
“We can’t continue being in the East African integration because it’s not going to benefit us. we have Kenyan goods and services all over our market,” noted Mbatekamwa.
The woman MP Bukwo district, Evelyn Chemutai also told the situation is very bad because when you reach Busia district now, maize has started germinating because trucks were stopped from entering Nairobi.
Tororo South County, Fredrick Angura wondered why Kenya has continued to send their products in Uganda yet the level of Aflatoxins in their products is much higher than that of Uganda.
“Our scientists should tell us the level of Aflatoxins in their products and government ought to take this issue immediately.
Bugweri county MP, Abdu Katuntu informed the members that Kenya needs to be told that it’s not a favor for Ugandans to trade with Kenya. This has been going on for long and we need to have action taken.
Kalungu West MP, Joseph Ssewungu also pointed out that Kenyans have always been treated well by Ugandan counterparts only to be rewarded with bans. Ssewungu noted that government has left them to conduct businesses without any problem and they are harshly paying us back by accusing us of poor quality products.
The explanation by the Government chief whip, Ruth Nankabirwa in defense of government position in regard to this matter fell on deaf ears as the legislators refused to concur with her saying that she was trying to run away from the issue since she is aware of it.