Relations between Uganda and Kenya remain solid-Gov’t

The controversial finance bill has unleashed widespread protests movement vowing for “7 Days of Rage.”

On June 25, 2024, Uganda House, a commercial building in Nairobi’s Central Business District, was vandalized and set ablaze during protests in Kenya.

The controversial finance bill has unleashed widespread protests movement vowing for “7 Days of Rage.” Last week, the government scrapped some tax increases, including a proposed 16% value-added tax on bread along with taxes on motor vehicles, vegetable oil and mobile money transfers. But the concessions have not been enough to quell protests amid the rising cost of living.

According to Ministry of Foreign Affairs Permanent Secretary Vincent Bagiire, the 6-floor building which was slated for reopening this Friday, June 28, 20204 has been undergoing renovations and was only occupied by commercial tenants on the ground floor.

“Whereas we regret the said incident that led to the destruction of the property, we commend the Nairobi Fire Department for putting out the fire,” he said in a statement dated June 26, 2024.

While the is extensive damage to the property, Bagiire noted that there are no reported fatalities that have been identified so far, “ it is important to note that none of the Diplomatic or Consular staff were in the building at the time the fire broke out.”

“The Government of Uganda condemns in the strongest terms the violence that led to the destruction of property and potential loss of lives,” said Bagiire Vincent Waiswa, Permanent Secretary of the Ugandan Government. “We support peaceful demonstrations as a democratic right, but we will not tolerate violence that puts lives and property at risk.”

He further urged calm and restraint, and discouraged speculation and premature conclusions, allowing for investigations into the matter.

“The Government of Uganda has reiterated that relations with the Government and people of Kenya remain solid,” he said.

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