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Lockdown Hits Kasese Salt Business

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Catherine Mbahimba, the principal town Clerk Katwe Kabatooro town council, says the delivery of services in the town council is likely to be affected because of low revenue collections. She says they were collecting fees from each motorcycle and vehicle transporting salt, which has reduced due to the inter-district travel restrictions.
A view of Katwe Salt Lake

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There is a 40 percent drop in salt production at Katwe-Kabatoro salt lake in Kasese district resulting from the current lockdown. The lockdown, which came with a ban on the inter-district travels and on both private and public transport means, has affected the export of the salt mainly to the Democratic Republic of Congo.    

Hajji Jumah Rajab, the chairperson of Lake Katwe salt Miner’s Savings and Credit Cooperative Society, says that they are stuck with hundreds of tons of salt from March when the first lock-down was announced. Rajab says that their product is lying in the pans because of the closure of roads and movement restrictions.

 

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Everest Musimenta, who owns a pan, says the lockdown has dashed his hopes. He says that he has not returned to his salt pan for more than a week now due to lack of customers. Oliver Masika, a miner at Katwe says the demand for raw salt has also reduced because of the Foot and Mouth Disease-FMD, which has killed several animals in Ankole.

She adds that the lockdown imposed across the country at the end of March brought production to an early close, meaning that this year’s output is down to less than 60 per cent from the previous year’s output. Catherine Mbahimba, the principal town Clerk Katwe Kabatooro town council, says the delivery of services in the town council is likely to be affected because of low revenue collections.

She says they were collecting fees from each motorcycle and vehicle transporting salt, which has reduced due to the inter-district travel restrictions.     

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Johnbosco Kananura, the LC III chairperson Katwe-Kabatooro town council, says that everything has changed as a result of the lockdown.

Kananura says that salt processing activity was hit because most plants across the industry are either running at lower capacity or closed in the initial phase of the lockdown.    

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