Street Vendors Take Advantage of KACITA Strike for Quick Profits

1784 Views Kampala, Uganda

In short
Lawrence Sewakambo, a trader in shopping Arcade, said while he supports the strike he could not afford to stay at home indefinitely. With family obligations, he participated for a day in solidarity before he decided to find another way of doing business.

In its third day, the Kampala City Traders Association (KACITA) strike has brought a lot of business to a halt. With most shops in the centre of town closed, the few open are making a profit. Several traders supposed to be part of the strike have found it difficult to resist the lure of selling their wares regardless.
 
Lawrence Sewakambo, a trader in shopping Arcade, said while he supports the strike he could not afford to stay at home indefinitely. With family obligations, he participated for a day in solidarity before he decided to find another way of doing business. 
 
Since he had an old stock, he decided to take advantage of the strike to try and sell it off.  He got the stock from his shop and displayed it on the veranda. The slow business tempo forced him to cut prices so that a dress he normally sold at 15,000 shillings would now go for 12,000 shillings.
 
To his surprise, this stock ran out in three days. He said this could not have been possible but for the strike. Lawrence expressed skepticism about the success of the strike though he is a participant. He said he doubts the government will give in to the traders’ demands. 
 
But it is not only the traders who should be part of the traders protest using the strike to make quick profits. Street vendors, outlawed by law, have become more visible as their competition continues to leave their shops closed.
David Mujuni has taken opportunity of the strike to make a quick buck. The clothes dealer has never owned his own shop and has always operated on the street. His merchandise like women's jeans sells for 5000 shillings.
 
With the strike in force, Mujuni has been relieved to discover Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) officials are not so interested in pursuing him for illegal vending. Presently Mujuni roams around Gazaland building downtown Kampala.
 
Mujuni confessed ignorance of the concerns of the KACITA traders strike. He said he buys most of the clothes he sells from St. Balikudembe Market (Owino). He had no idea what kind or amount of tax clothes from this market have to part with before they go on the market. All he knows is that he is not about to lose this opportunity while it lasts. 

 

Mentioned: kacita