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Uganda Opposition To Resume Protests Over Escalating Food Prices

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Posted July 27, 2011 by Ugandan Diaspora News Team in Economy ~ 1,721 views

     

By Nicholas Bariyo, KAMPALA, Uganda (Dow Jones) ~ Ugandan opposition parties Wednesday said that they would resume nation-wide protests against escalating food prices and inflation next week, blaming the government for not addressing the prevailing distressful economic environment.

The opposition under their umbrella pressure group, Activists for Change, said that despite their decision to pause anti-government protests in June, authorities have not done enough to address the economic situation of the people, who continue to suffer the steep inflation and commodity prices.

“The budget was read (in June) but the band aid solutions to address [the] escalating cost of food and fuel were not enough to seal the gaping wound in the economy,” the group said.

The group is planning to resume the protests in the Ugandan western robusta coffee hub of Masaka next week.

Inspired by the calls for democracy in North Africa and the Arab world, the protests posed one of the toughest challenges to President Yoweri Museveni’s 25- year rule earlier this year, before they fizzled out following a brutal crackdown from security forces.

Mathias Mpuuga, the coordinator for Activists for Change said that although the group paused its activities to give the government a chance to respond to the economic crisis, they had already set in motion a process of citizen engagement and defiance that spread to different groups.

Ugandan retailers, public transporters, women activists and lawyers have all gone on strike at different stages in the past few months over the rising costs of living.

“[The] government has been on the defensive for the last three and a half months and they have failed to come up with plausible excuses or credible interventions to avert further economic crises,” Mpuuga said.

Separately, a Ugandan police spokeswoman said the security forces would not allow the politicians to destabilize public order through the protests.

Last month, the Central Bank introduced an inflation targeting bank rate, in a policy shift aimed at addressing the outrage triggered by the inflation.

Uganda is Africa’s largest robusta coffee grower.

By Nicholas Bariyo, contributing to Dow Jones Newswires; +256 75 2624615; bariyonic@yahoo.co.uk


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Ugandan Diaspora News Team

Ugandan Diaspora News Online is an independent, non political news portal primarily aimed at serving Ugandans who work and reside outside Uganda. Our aim is to be a one stop shop for everything Ugandan and the celebration of our Ugandan heritage.

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