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Kenyan Fishmongers Halt Fish Export To DRC

The fishmongers are also protesting the decision by Ugandan government authorities to impound goods in transit. They want relevant Uganda and Kenyan authorities to address the challenges they are facing to facilitate smooth trade between the two countries.

Audio 3

Some fishmongers in Busia County fish market in Kenya have halted the export of fish to the Democratic Republic of Congo- DRC for fear of impounding their fish in Uganda.  

The fishmongers say that they don’t want to continue counting losses following the confiscation of five fish trucks at Mpondwe border in Kasese district.     

On October 3, 2021, Uganda Revenue Authority- URA and the Fisheries Protection Unit- FPU impounded five fish trucks destined for the DRC on suspicion of transporting immature fish. 

The fishmongers are also protesting the decision by Ugandan government authorities to impound goods in transit. 

They want relevant Uganda and Kenyan authorities to address the challenges they are facing to facilitate smooth trade between the two countries.

Steven Wangira, a fishmonger and transporter, says that they have stocked more than 200 tons of fish meant for export to DRC through Uganda but they fear that it can be impounded. 

Wangira says that Ugandan security impounded his fish at Mpondwe border last year, which is contrary to the East African Community Integration.

Kiswahili audio:

//Cue in: "Sisi samaki yetu....                        

Cue out:...maneno ya East Africa,"// 

Ouma Ochieng, a fishmonger says that they wonder why the cargo is cleared at two border posts can be impounded.

Kiswahili audio:

//Cue in: 'Kyenye tungewomba........             

Cue out:...wawachilie samaki yetu,"//

Milikisa Achieng, another fishmonger, says that he has stocked 12 sealed boxes of fish because they want Uganda to first explain to them what they are supposed to do whenever they enter Uganda other than impounding their goods.

Kiswahili audio:

//Cue in: "We want tenachache...                

Cue out:...ama ni siku gani"//

Fishmongers whose trucks were impounded on October 18th, 2021 sued the head of the FPU on Lake George and Edward, the Director of Fisheries Resources in Entebbe and the Attorney General for illegally confiscating their trucks loaded with fish.

Deo Sentiba, the FPU Public Relations Officer, says that they impounded the fish trucks when the drivers abandoned them at the checkpoint at Mpondwe border. 

He says that they obtained a court order to break the seals since the owners didn’t show up at their offices. He says that they found that the fish was immature and most of it came from Lake George in Uganda.