President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni who is also the NRM Party Presidential candidate has revealed that he talked to his Kenyan and Tanzanian counterparts to resolve the persisting issue of Ugandan sugar which has been consistently blocked from the two countries.
Kenya a few months ago through its Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya announced a ban on all sugar imports and subsequently revoked all sugar import permits, some of which were held by Uganda manufacturers and exporters.
This reportedly left Ugandan sugar maufactruers stranded with over 35,000 tonnes of sugar.
Speaking yesterday to leaders and youth from the districts of Mubende, Kyankwanzi, Kiboga, Kasanda and Mityana district, Museveni said the issue of sugar was being handled.
“One of the most important needs of the people is the market which we must focus on. I talked to Magufuli and Kenyatta and they will help us with the sugar surplus in Uganda,” he said.
Early this month, Ugandan Manufacturers under their umbrella body of Uganda Manufacturer’s Association (UMA) asked Government to retaliate to member countries which have failed to fulfill all obligations of East Africa Community (EAC) common market
Among the countries pointed out is Kenya which the manufacturers say has continued to block Ugandan goods despite a number of negotiations held between the leaders of Uganda and Kenya
Mr. Daniel Birungi, the Executive Director UMA revealed Kenyan authorities have on several occasions come up with weak and lame excuses to defend sabotaging trade with Uganda.
Meanwhile on the issue of small markets in the region, President Museveni noted that with East African Integration and Africa becoming united, it was possible to widen the market and develop the regions.
Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) is due to be ope rationalized and will be the world’s largest free trade area by number of countries once it’s fully up and running.
To the youths, President Museveni informed them that they must desist from making politics their source of livelihood, but rather set up businesses such that they can be able to stand independently and be well financially.
Commenting on the youth and women mobilization materials to support the campaigns, Museveni noted that some leaders of the NRM party had met and had considered giving them support.
“I met with Central Executive Committee in Masindi and we agreed to complement and support women and youth in their NRM structures. We shall do this in the different districts and give a little facilitation for things like transport and lunch during the mobilization,” he said.