By Carol Kasujja
Due to change of location, high costs and the financial wellbeing of potential buyers, art and craft traders who annually sell in Uganda have this year made losses.
The traders were shifted from the Railway Grounds to Centenary Park by the Kampala City Council Authority last year.
“We pay taxes and the owners of Centenary Park also ask for a lot of money for us to display our products. This is made worse by the turn up being low,” said Edith Kyeswa, the co-ordinator of the expo.
Kyeswa said that buyers are also complaining that their products are expensive but they have nothing to do because they are also charged heavily so they have to make sure that they bring back profits.
“Most of the traders are from Tanzania and Kenya and need to pay for accommodation and feeding. The only way they make a profit, however small, is by expensively pricing their products” she said.
However, a female Kenyan trader who makes a variety of African Jewelry and always comes to Uganda for the expo says, she has made losses because the organisers of the expo did not advertise.
“The organisers refused to advertise so people are not aware that we are back. They claim that the authorities refused them to use loud public speakers to advertise. We paid heavily and now we are making losses. I am not coming back during the Christmas season if things go on like this,” she said. Teddy Mary Kinsambwe a Ugandan trader says: “This time around people do not have money. Since Monday I have sold only one dress,” she said.