While Museveni is using the masks programme to popularize himself ahead of the 2021 general election, the Kyadondo East legislator, Hon. Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu has looked at it in the economic perspective.
Today Bobi Wine told parliament to protect the plight of Ugandans in the small scale mask production business a day after Mr. Museveni declared himself the sole producer.
Bobi Wine stresses that if these Ugandans are totally kicked out of mask production, there is a possibility of a snail paced mask production by the patented Jinja based Nyanza Textile Industries (NYTIL).
Bobi Wine’s assessment comes a day after Museveni during his televised fourteenth address said that his government is the only mandated body to offer each Ugandan citizen a face mask. Whereas the move was ushered by a small section of Ugandans, senior analysts saw it as a politicking opportunity for Mr. Museveni to emerge as a tragic hero from the covid crisis as the 2021 general elections approach.
Bobi Wine in the Tuesday session told parliament that Nytil may not even beat the said 2, June deadline since its 10,000 per eight hour mask production capacity will obviously fail to make it to 45 million in the given fortnight time frame.
Bobi Wine says a great deal of Ugandans are currently surviving on mask production and therefore putting them out of business would lead them into unemployment. In the same vein, the speaker, Rebecca Kadaga with concern looked into Bobi Wine’s views and extracted a lot of meaning. “Now that govt is to provide masks to Ugandans, I seek to know how ordinary companies & young people making masks can benefit. The issue of equity in the procurement of masks should be clear and transparent. If #Nytil is good, let it compete with other companies”, she tweeted.
Yesterday, Museveni added an extra 14 days of the lockdown and made mask wearing mandatory by June, 2 when he expects to partially open the economy.