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FUTA Warns of Drastic Action If President Fails to Act

FUTA president John Kabanda (Left) and Rweyigaba Moses, chairperson of Katukazane Shoes Dealers Association Uganda addressing media

Kampala, Uganda – The Federation of Uganda Traders Associations (FUTA) has warned the Ugandan government that it will take drastic action if their concerns are not addressed by the President in the upcoming meeting.

The traders first met with the President on 7th May 2024, where they raised several concerns affecting them as they go about their various businesses, pointing out EFRIS as the major challenge. However, the meeting  failed to reach a final conclusion hence the President scheduling another date

“If the government does not come out strongly and do something about the EFRIS issue, even us on 1st August, we are starting the demonstration just like Kenya did,” Kabanda warned.

He also highlighted that all business shops will be closed effectively 31st July, where they will all head to Kololo independence ground to meet H.E the President of Uganda Yoweri Kaguta Museveni and get the final message from him regarding their issues as business community. “If the meeting with the President fails to prioritise our needs as traders, then on 1st August we are taking action right away.” He said

He disclosed that they will match to parliamentary Avenue towards Parliament of Uganda, where they will caution legislators on the various bad policies they pass on their behalf in the house yet they are unfavorable.

“we expect to spend about 2 days at Parliament. Then we shall shall match towards the Uganda Revenue Authority body. Why URA? It’s because they have taken us for granted and that’s why president asked them to wave off penalties on traders which they have totally declined to. They withdrew for a few and left out the rest.” He said

FUTA President John Kabanda further expressed solidarity with Kenyan businessmen affected by ongoing protests in Kenya, which have also impacted Ugandan traders.

“We as the business community try to engage with the responsible government authorities, but nothing transpires from these meetings, hence culminating into these violent decisions like the case in Kenya,” Kabanda said.

Kabanda praised the Kenyan business community for standing up against unfair tax policies but cautioned the Ugandan government to learn from Kenya’s mistakes. He urged the government to adopt a citizen-centric approach to policies, warning that failure to do so could lead to similar protests in Uganda.

Rweyigaba Moses, chairperson of Katukazane Shoes Dealers Association Uganda, expressed concern about goods stranded in Kenya due to the protests, fearing destruction or loss.

“The trucks which were supposed to head to Uganda with our goods are currently stuck in Kenya due to fear of destruction that could be inflicted on the goods by the Kenyan protesters,” Moses said.

The president and Traders are set to meet for the 2nd time in Kololo on 31st July to do thorough research on the subject matter, so that they can come up with a final resolution to end a long standing dispute over Uganda Revenue Authority (URA)’s Electronic Fiscal Receipting and Invoicing Solution (EFRIS).

The Ugandan business community remains united in their call for the government to address their concerns and avoid a Kenyan-style crisis.

 

 

Derrick Kanalo
the authorDerrick Kanalo
News Reporter/ Editor
Am a professionally trained and well skilled media personality. Accuracy is part of my top priority as a journalist.