Ugandan coffee farmer Robert Kabushenga, has suggested that employers should allow staff to work from home or in shifts as a measure of dealing with rising fuel costs that have made the daily commute to work very expensive.
In a tweet that has since gone viral, Kabushenga argued that in the end, this option would be cheap for the employer and the workers.
Kabushenga’s suggestion mirrors the arrangement that was adopted by many companies during the Covid-19 pandemic when the lockdown forced them to allow their employees to work from home to halt the spread of the virus.
Yet after the economy was fully reopened in January, firms went back to their traditional ways, appearing not to have learnt lessons from the pandemic, argued some of the people who responded to Kabushenga’s tweet.
“The Covid-19 pandemic didn’t teach employers in Uganda anything. Working in offices is the new normal.
Your recommendation is strategic!!” said Enock Nkulanga.
Some however argued that working from home could be more expensive for employers who may be required to equip their staff with tools like laptops and mifis.A one Doreen said in a country which still has load shedding issues, working from home may not be sustainable.Some suggested that schools should reinstate online classes because the daily dropping and picking of children has become very expensive due to the rising fuel.Currently, a litre of petrol retails at Shs 5600 at most fuel stations which is an increase of almost Shs 2,000 within a one year period. Some dealers believe that by the end of May, it might shoot to Shs 6,000 a litre and shoot further up as the year goes by.
Unable to bear the rising fuel costs, many people have parked their vehicles while public transporters have hiked costs. Goods of essential commodities have also gone up.
Museveni is expected to address the nation on May 22 on the rising commodity prices.