The impact of recent ban on the use of polythene bags imposed by the National Environment Management Authority (NEMA) tightens the customers’ budget as they buy commodities from supermarkets.
Most of the supermarkets have adapted to the usage of cotton, nylon and sack like bags and boxes. The bags are charged through with an extra fee or through VAT depending on the different supermarkets. Mega Standard charges Shs200, Shoprite Shs200 on paper bags and Shs300 on sack like bags and Capital Shoppers Shs1500.
Although some of the supermarkets purchase their bags form local traders in Kikuubo, a trading street in the city, others have manufactured their own, selling them at exclusive prices. Shoprite branded bags are sold between Shs6900 and Shs7900 depending on the size. (which other supermarkets have manufacture and brand their bags?)Efforts to reach the management for a comment were futile.
According to source that prefers anonymity, Mega Standard uses empty cardboard cartons that come with stock if the nylon bags are finished. However some customers don’t want to carry boxes and choose to abandon purchasing altogether. Mineral water bottles aren’t packed, one has to hold it or put it in their bags.
“This has reduced customers who prefer shopping at Kikuubo Street, since the traders use polythene bags. They have ordered branded bags from China but it will take 2-3 months to obtain them,” adds the source.
Derrick Kasozi, a trader of bags in Kikuubo, purchases a dozen of cotton bags at Shs5000, selling each at Shs1000. However, few people buy them because most of the traders provide polythene bags to the customers after shopping goods from them, at no cost.
Ann Musoke, a customer at Capital Shoppers said that she was forced to buy a paper bag at Shs1500 because she couldn’t take the chicken and soap in her hands. It is inconveniencing because one hasn’t planned for extra expenses, she notes.
NEMA Public Relations Officer, Naomi Karekaho has confirmed an enforcement check on Kikuubo Street any time this week after the operation on supermarkets.
Joseph, I think Charlotte didn’t get this very right: she should have talked to the manufacturers of buveera and the impact the ban has on their businesses ie what happens to the equipment?; the effect on the workers, any layoffs?, any impending cancellation of orders?; amount of loss envisaged by the cancellation; any threats of court action? What about markets like South Sudan which don’t have a similar ban, will govt allow continued exportation? How many factories have been involved in the manufacture and importation of buveera? How much have they been paying in form of taxes The NEMA/Uganda Export Promotions Board (UPEB) spokespersons can give a broader picture about the policies on those involved in export.