Kampala woman Member of Parliament contender and celebrated political activist, Dr. Stella Nyanzi has this morning announced her participation in the protest staged by arcade operators who want government to reopen their businesses and allow them to operate as the phased lockdown easing kicks off.
Arcade operators who have been under lockdown for over 100 days say they are being pressurised by their bank loans and merchandise which is losing shape for being out of use for all this while. “We don’t have any other choice but peacefully demand for our resumption of business. I’m a boutique operator and I’m now certain all my stock is dusty and out of shape,” cries Nankya, a trader at Mukwano arcade. “We also have families to cater for. Our lives are not at peace. We want to be reopened,” she adds.
The traders are to first have a press conference today, Tuesday July 7 at 11am in downtown Kampala where they’ll narrate their untold ordeal before marching peacefully with placards.
Nyanzi, who is boldly driven by her urge to fight for people’s rights says she will be part of this cause. In her Tuesday morning Facebook post, the Kampala woman MP hopeful posted;
“OPEN ARCADES!” “NO RENT!”
Today, I will be joining my loud voice to the voices of oppressed traders from the arcades of Kampala city.
The shops of these arcade-based traders are still locked by dictator Museveni, supposedly in a bid to prevent the transmission of Covid-19. However landlords of shops in the arcades continue to demand for rent, regardless of the lack of income to their tenants.
“OPEN ARCADES!” We demand.
“NO RENT!” We insist!
In the comments section of her post, Nyanzi is cheered by traders who welcome her solidarity. Siraje Mukasa comments, “Our MP for KAMPALA we need your loud voice in this, its a syndicate for government to keep traders businesses locked up but landlords demand rent even when traders have been home for 100 days.”
Relatedly, a team of Boda Boda cyclists through People Power counsel, Anthony Wameli filed a legal suit contesting the government sanctions that bar them from operating to-date. The Boda riders through their lawyers want court to press and immediate order that reinstates them on the streets to pursue their known passenger ferrying duties.