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Najjembe market vendors protest high medical fees

By Jeff Andrew Lule

Added 22nd August 2016 09:43 AM

Miria Nakiyimba, 26, a vendor said she has never been examined yet she sells her food stuff freely.

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Miria Nakiyimba, 26, a vendor said she has never been examined yet she sells her food stuff freely.

Vendors at Najjembe Market, a popular stopover along Kampala-Jinja highway have decried the high medical fees charged by the district health inspector.

The vendors claim that the medical examination fee was raised from sh4,000 to sh20,000, yet they were not examined. 

This means all travelers eating around this stopover risk eating contaminated food stuff and drinks since the vendors are not examined. 

Sarah Nakatudde, 48, a vendor and member of the market leadership committee, claimed that health officers collect money from vendors but are not examined.

She said the fee was also raised to sh20,000 without any consultations from the vendors.

"People would not be complaining if they were being examined and given their certificates. But they only collect money without examination," he added.

Miria Nakiyimba, 26, a vendor said she has never been examined yet she sells her food stuff freely.

"I paid the money but was not examined. They even never gave any receipt to show that I paid. The money is too much for us yet it does nothing," she noted.

Milly Byaniko, another vendor said the fee is too much compared to what they earn.

Nichodemous Inshimiye, said he got examined but wondered why the charge was raised.

The chairman of the market, Geoffrey Kiganda said the district leadership made the adjustments without consulting traders "which is unfair and inconsiderate compared to their little earnings".

"We want them to revisit the fee. The matter has been raised to the various leaders and have promised to call for a meeting," he noted.

The market has 1,050 traders with mostly widows and youth. Najjembe is commonly known for its tasty roasted chicken, cassava, meat and frozen drinks among others, which is consumed by travellers en route Kampala-Jinja.

The area health inspector, Zam Namwanje said the fee changed when they were elevated to Lugazi municipality.

"If they want it reduced, they should go to the town clerk or the municipal level. It is them mandated to set polices and our work is to implement," she noted.

Adding; "We used to send them to health centres to get examined but realized it was expensive. It is a lie that they are not examined. The issue is about money".

Lugazi municipality, Deo Tumwesigye said they were going to meet the vendors and discuss the matter

 

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