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Youths Block Busoga Highways over Rising Commodity Prices :: Uganda Radionetwork
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Youths Block Busoga Highways over Rising Commodity Prices

Their actions deterred both motorcyclists, drivers and pedestrians alike from accessing the highways. They were seen pelting all the road users who declined to obey their call of joining the protest.
Part of the Jinja-Kamuli highway blocked in Namulesa trading center.
The week started on a chaotic note on highways in the Busoga sub-region as rowdy youth went about erecting barricades to block traffic from moving in either direction.

Sections of youths on Monday started by blocking major highways linking surrounding districts to Jinja city, as part of their ongoing protests against the skyrocketing commodity prices.

This isthe second protest against commodity prices in Jinja city in less than a month.

They dumped bricks, rocks  and logs in the trading centers of Namulesa, Mafubira, Wanyama, Katende, Wakitaka and Wanyange, in a bid to disrupt traffic flow from morning until midday.

They staged major road blocks in the areas of Mafubira along the Jinja-Kamuli highway and Bugembe along the Jinja-Iganga highway, while having faceoffs with police in those two areas, as they continued lighting up tyres in other minor trading centers, at first taking security operatives by surprise.

Their actions deterred both motorcyclists, drivers and pedestrians alike from accessing the highways.  They were seen pelting all the road users who declined to obey their call of joining the protest .

One of the youths told journalists that their protest was triggered by the social media posts rallying the country into a nationwide economic shutdown. 

"Unlike leaders from other countries within the East African Community-EAC region who are seen to be offering short term solutions to control the skyrocketing prices, not much has been done in Uganda, which largely implored me to be a part of today's protest," the youth who preferred anonymity said.

Another youth operating a chapati business in Bugembe ward says that he has run out of business and he resolved to join the protest as a gesture of solidarity with his colleagues. "Late last year I was making a profit of 20,000 Shillings per day, but ever since we started experiencing skyrocketing prices of essential commodities like wheat flour and cooking oil, I rarely make 3,000 Shillings," he said. "This current suffering coupled with the government's reluctance to address the situation with short-term remedies has pushed us to the streets."

The protest later turned chaotic with a section of youths robbing valuables from members of the public under the guise of forcing them to return to their homes.

They were seen beating up people before while grabbing handbags from ladies and other valuables from anybody who had any.

Meanwhile, the Kiira regional police spokesperson, James Mubi, says that several suspects have been arrested and are currently detained at Jinja central police station. He promised that a detailed report shall be availed to the press after concluding the screening process.

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