Three Asian traders arrested for ‘hiking’ food prices

Four traders including three Asians and a Ugandan have been arrested in Koboko town for allegedly hiking prices of food items in anticipation of a total lockdown due to the Coronavirus outbreak.

This comes shortly after President Museveni warned “crooks” who are hiking prices of foodstuffs and basic commodities in the face of coronavirus pandemic that they face arrest.

Addressing the nation on Tuesday, March 24, 2020, his fourth time in a week, the President said such people also risk losing their trading licences.

Now, led by the Resident District Commissioner Capt. Yahaya Kakooza, the police have locked up shops and arrested three Asians and a Ugandan trader over the same.

The arrest follows the consumers’ outcry that traders were taking advantage of the virus to fleece them and they were planning to stage peaceful protests.

One of the affected essential commodities is salt, a packet of which has been going for Shs700 but has now risen to between Shs3500 to Shs4000.

In Moyo, Mr Williams Anyama, the LC5 Chairman has condemned the exploitation of consumers by traders.

“There is a policy on consumer protection which stops bars business operators from exploiting consumers. Yesterday we witnessed some commercial operators raise their prices almost every hour. Business people should desist from exploiting their own people,” he said.

Mr President said that “There are crooks hiking prices of food. I will send spies if they find you hiking prices, I will withdraw your licence. I may organise the NRM cadres to bring the food from the village and sell at a proper price. I won the crooks not to lead us to temptation but deliver us from evil.”

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