Why punish Uganda for Kenyan problems?
A trade war is erupting between Kenya and Uganda. Historically Ugandan importers posted an insurance bond at Mombasa Port to have their goods released. They then procured paperwork at Malaba to release the bond as their goods crossed into Uganda.
However the Kenya Revenue Authority is now insisting that the bond be paid in cash. As a result, thousands of containers and cars are piling up in Mombasa.
President Museveni has sent a special envoy to Kenya to try and resolve the crisis. Some importers have indeed been avoiding duty by promising to take their goods to Uganda but selling them in Kenya. However why punish Ugandans for the faults of businessmen in Kenya?
Clearly importers can get forged documents at Malaba to show that their goods have left Kenya. But whether the insurance is cash or a bank bond, importers can still acquire forged documents to recover their security. This harsh remedy will not solve the problem.
The KRA needs to tighten up its own paperwork and coordinate with the Ugandan Revenue Authority to double-check that the goods have arrived in Uganda. Otherwise the KRA is killing the spirit of the East African Community in a futile attempt to control renegades in Kenya.
Quote of the day: "There cannot be a crisis next week. My schedule is already full." - Henry Kissinger became US Secretary of State on September 21, 1973