President Museveni has warned companies contracted to supply relief food to government over hoarding some of the items so as to fetch higher prices.
Speaking during his address to the nation about the Covid-19 situation on Sunday evening, Museveni said he would be forced to import food if the habit persists.
“I heard there were some games by some suppliers trying to hoard. I don’t like selfishness. If I hear there is not enough posho or beans because people are hording it, I will import. It will be too bad for you. I just get a whisper, I will import,”Museveni said.
Last week, government temporarily halted relief food distribution to the vulnerable in Kampala central citing lack of beans.
The same problem delayed distribution of food in all the five divisions of Kampala and other parts of greater Kampala Metropolitan Area as government had promised.
This prompted a number of people to complain of having missed out on the food, a problem caused by the lack of beans.
The president on Sunday evening said he had been told that some suppliers were trying to take advantage of the situation by hoarding the products to cause a shortage in the market so they can fetch higher prices.
He however warned such games will not be tolerated by government, adding that he might be forced to import cheap and good quality food from other countries.
“You crooks are trying to take advantage of the problem. We shall import and it will rot in your stores. You think you will hoard and get higher prices but we shall import and your food will rot from stores. I know those games,”Museveni warned.
“I am warning you. If you want to kill you own brothers for profits, the answer will be importing”
Poor quality food
The president also warned suppliers against bad food saying government will go against them.
“When you sell us bad food, we shall go for you. If the food is bad, don’t sell it to us,” he said.
On Saturday, Uganda National Bureau of Standards said they have withheld over 100 tonnes of coronavirus relief food including both posho and beans over poor quality.
According to the quality body, 63 tonnes were for maize flour, whereas 41 tonnes were for beans that were meant government’s relief distribution program for vulnerable families in Kampala and Wakiso affected by the Covid-19 lockdown.
“We have had challenges especially with beans and they are telling us it is because of the season. We have rejected many tonnes and they have had to take them back and return them after sorting,” said UNBS Executive Director, Ben Manyindo.
The UNBS boss said the move to check the quality of food distributed to vulnerable people in Kampala followed numerous complaints followed numerous complaints from members of the public promoting the quality body to swing into action.
He said that in just one week, they have found 104 tonnes of relief food including food donated by well-wishers was not meeting the required standards.