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We’ve no industries to protect, do we?

By Vision Reporter

Added 19th June 2002 03:00 AM

SIR— I am not happy with President Museveni’s reasons for increasing tax on secondhand clothes. he is very explicit about where his interests lie.

SIR— I am not happy with President Museveni’s reasons for increasing tax on secondhand clothes. he is very explicit about where his interests lie.

SIR— I am not happy with President Museveni’s reasons for increasing tax on secondhand clothes. he is very explicit about where his interests lie. Said he, “...we have just won an election. if we introduce taxes early, by the time of the elections, our critics would have given up”. So, are the citizens of this country mere pawns on a chess board? True, our industries need to be protected but let them take off first. the mivumba or emikuhurirano which Museveni now vilifies have saved him from being president of a naked people. There are clothes which cost as little as sh500 but at least they can cover one’s nudity. Museveni and his family have crossed the Rubicon and will never know what drives people to buy emikurirano! But the whole of Uganda is his constituency and he should know the degree of poverty they are labouring under. This is the second time President Museveni has put money before the interests of the people. I was astonished some three months ago when he said that africans do not inhale cigarette smoke and therefore are exposed to less risk of contracting cancer! Jane Mutesi Kampala SIR—The tax on secondhand clothes have been increased. In aid of what? In aid of protecting local textile industries! In all honesty, which textile industries are being protected, how much do they produce and what quality? The only local textiles I know are tie-and-dye cotton fabrics. The textile imports in this country fall in three categories: very expensive European and American garments and fairly cheap Far East ones. Brand new clothes from the West cost an arm and a leg and the correct political thinking in vogue is that only politicians are entitled to a living wage! The Far East clothes are generally poor quality. a new pair of trousers, for example, will start fading within two or three months. be that as it may, they are still out of reach of the ordinary Ugandan. The third category are secondhand clothes which, over the years, have become our lifeline. The peasants are not even asking for value but just for something on their backs. will the blessed local industries produce both quality and quantity enough to serve Uganda’s 22 million people, and when? Will the prices be pocket-friendly or should we go back to the days of our ancestors? J. Mbaroraburora Kampala

We’ve no industries to protect, do we?

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