Monday, 19 May 2008
I Know Times Are Hard But...
Much of our work in 'Food Rights' at Action Aid at the moment is concerned with the repercussions of rising food prices in Uganda. The President declared that this was a good thing for small-holder farmers. However, with the cost of essentials such as salt, sugar and soap also rising it seems that any benefit will be short-term and as always the main beneficiaries will be the middle men anyway. At the same time the urban poor can afford even less food and many are sleeping hungry.
One thing we did not investigate was the possible impact on that most maligned sector of society, students. It appears from the New Vision that the Dean has, though, beaten us to it. He has declared that campus canteens will be serving only posho and beans for the rest of the semester. Beef, chicken, rice, potatoes and matooke will be absent just as students enter the exam period, provoking the inevitable complaints from the Students' Guild. This coincides with the time in the year when most students are broke, having spent their termly allowances, and thus are unable to buy meals from elsewhere. Let's just hope the desire for chicken and chips in Wandegeya doesn't give the sugar daddies any more excuse to trawl around campus looking for prey.