By Abubakar Bin Siraj
The inter-district cattle traders of Kaberamaido, Amolatar, Dokolo and other districts are bitter with the Government for imposing a ban on cattle movement by ferry along Namasale – Ochero landing sites.
The angry traders together with their legislators claim that trade in Ochero weekly cattle market Ochero town council in Kaberemaido district has been affected by the ban hence affecting their financial income flow as some of them operate on loans.
Government recently imposed a ban in Northern Uganda and the ban was aimed at enabling Government to implement the ongoing Balalo operation in Northern Uganda successfully.
The traders from Kaberamaido, Amolatar, Nakasongola, and West Nile are not allowed to cross with their animals using a ferry until the Balalo Operation is concluded.
Ali Hassan Emetu the chairperson inter-district traders said the ban imposed to curtail Balalo’s ferrying livestock for rearing in Northern Uganda has greatly affected traders who were surviving on cattle trade as a source of income.
Ochero Cattle market is a weekly market that operates every Monday and Tuesday with livestock as common trade supported by other merchandise.
Agnes Apio the town clerk Ochero town council notes that the town council has so far lost over UGX three million (3M) as result of the ban.
Daniel Elisu one of the traders says last week he bought 14 cows from Nakasongola and two died because of the condition as he couldn’t transport them all ay a go.
He asks the Government to consider reverting its decision because Balalo’s are allowed to transport their animals back home leaving them with licensed trade receipts.
Some of the traders with a letter of no objection are equally prohibited from transporting their livestock even in possession of the letters,” He said.
Peter Okwiir, another trader, notes that the ban is a barrier to their economic growth as it bars them from mobilizing resources for paying fees for their children and repaying loans for those servicing loans.
He expressed worries that domestic violence cases will rise if the ban is maintained for a long period of time due to failure to support their families financially.
Whileas Alfred Edakasi, the MP Kaberamaido County noted that the allowed routes of Karuma and Jinja are expensive for the traders to use hence affecting the business.
He asked the Minister to review the policy because the traders are subjected to difficult situations.
James Olobo alias Dubai the Member of Parliament Kioga North Constituency in Amolatar District revealed that the ban is illegal because the Prime Minister last week declined having imposed such a ban on the licensed traders.
Olobo intimated that the prime minister has instructed his office to write to her office for appropriate action.
He called on the traders to stay calm as they follow up with the matters to ensure that the situation resumes to normal.