““I want to advise Ugandans to go to petrol stations that have not hiked the prices. Two companies have not hiked their prices. Go and buy from those ones. These others will also follow suit because it’s now not necessary for any company to hike the price above Shs5,000” – Prime Minister Robinah Nabbanja (Job Bwire – ‘Ugandans should boycott fuel stations that keep prices high- PM Nabbanja’ Daily Monitor, 20.01.2022).
We remember just mere years ago when the National Resistance Movement (NRM) government was going after “defiance”. Everyone was targeted for supporting defiance and planned corporate boycotts of businesses connected to the regime and it’s high ranking officials. There was an outrage and disgust.
The regime apologists defended going against defiance and civil disobedience. Now, the Prime Minister of the 11th Parliament and this term is speaking well of boycott. As the fuel-crisis is deepening and the state isn’t doing anything directly to help it out.
Another minister has challenged the need for arresting the fuel-station operators who is sky-rocketing the prices. As it is not a cause-and-effect scenario, as the needs for petrol is bigger than the imports of it. That’s why the prices is going up and the stations are struggling to serve the nation. Therefore, the crisis is a border issue and a supply issue.
Its not the petrol stations fault… it is the whole supply-chain from importers to the producer. As the landlock nation has made it hectic on the border and the border-post has stifled the imports. Even with the temporary stop of testing for COVID-19 on the Ugandan side of border. The Republic haven’t directly patched the hurt. No, it continues to damage the Republic and everyone in need for petrol.
The PM is showing her character her, instead of acting and finding solutions… the PM is speaking of boycotting and avoiding the petrol stations, which has to high prices. The PM should address the rises prices and the reason for it. It isn’t the companies or the stations itself, which is directly at fault. As they are based on the imports of petrol and the possibility of getting steady supplies as well. Because, if it goes empty and such … just proves the reason for the rising prices, as the needs are bigger than the current supply.
The PM should address that and the words of defiance is what an opposition leader should do. The opposition should act in defiance and ask for civil disobedience. Ask the public to boycott and stop using certain services. As that is even possible elsewhere… and when your low on fuel, your low on fuel. Then you need to buy and get more to be able to drive…
So, the PM knows this, as she has 4 wheel-drive and an SUV. She drives around and enjoys the perks of her office. Her office and her title covers for everything. There is no worries and it’s all paid for. The fuel-crisis doesn’t hit home and neither does it damage any of the elites in the government either. They are living lavish and don’t have to worry about pricing or inflation for that matter.
That’s why the defiant and defiance against certain fuel-stations is a foolish move, as it is a populist selection or trick. The state should secure the supply-chain and proper reserves to stifle the prices. Instead, the state is asking for civil disobedience, which isn’t a vibe your supposed to get from high ranking officials. Good luck doing that on the road from up-country to anywhere. So, the PM should reconsider, but don’t expect so. She’s high and mighty, which means she will not face any real consequences for this. Except for writings like mine… Peace.