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URA closes Kampala building, over 300 stranded

By Simon Peter Tumwine

Added 22nd October 2019 08:34 PM

According to tenants, URA demands for immediate payment of sh500m tax arrears from the land lord, Hajji Muhammed Zziwa.

Skylight 703x422

A police officer guarding the arcade

According to tenants, URA demands for immediate payment of sh500m tax arrears from the land lord, Hajji Muhammed Zziwa.

Over 300 traders owning business units at a shopping arcade in the city centre have been stranded for four days after Uganda Revenue Authority (URA) closed the premises URA sealed off Skylight Arcade in Kampala for failure to pay taxes.

The building was closed on Friday by URA inspectors with the help of police. According to tenants, URA demands for immediate payment of sh500m tax arrears  from the land lord, Hajji  Muhammed Zziwa.

losed shops at the arcadeClosed shops at the arcade

 

This afternoon, Godfrey Katongole, the chairperson Kampala Traders Arcades Association (KATA) said the traders have been locked outside and have no way to access the building.

“We spoke to Zziwa and he told us he had engaged with URA to have the complex re-opened before the end of the day, but this has not happened”, Katongole said.

“He is taking us for a ride. If they are going to open the building for business to resume, why then is there heavy police deployment at the entrances?” one of the traders identified questioned.

tranded traders gathered in groups near the shopping arcade Stranded traders gathered in groups near the shopping arcade

 

Some of the traders allege that the armed police personnel have been at the premises since last Friday.

Efforts to talk to Zziwa were fruitless as his aides said he was busy.  Tom Mukasa, one of the mangers in an engagement with tenants, said the arcade will be opened soon.

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