RWAMAGANA - Authorities in Rwamagana town yesterday launched a campaign against poor sanitation in the area, and in the process, closed several popular restaurants.
It is alleged that most restaurants and bars were serving poorly stored and expired food, posing a health hazard to consumers.
Local leaders in Kigabiro Sector of the district warned that restaurants and hotels would not be spared in the ongoing operation.
Owners of affected restaurants are expected to pay fines and renovate their business premises before they are allowed to reopen.
Jeannette Mutesi, the Executive Secretary of the sector said that the operation would even affect bars.
She said that proprietors had received numerous warnings from the authorities to no avail.
Mutesi cautioned businesspersons, who eluded the operation by closing doors upon learning that authorities would arrive to inspect their premises.
“Ours is a long process...at the beginning it looks like authorities and business operators are playing a game of cat and mouse. But I want to warn those dodging that fines will triple...we may even close their businesses indefinitely,” she warned.
Aisha Uwinkamiye, a proprietor of one of the affected restaurants, admitted that her premises lacked minimum hygiene standards.
She, however, begged for leniency and ample time to refurbish her restaurant.
“I am registering huge losses since the closure...authorities should fine us and allow us to resume work . Our capital of course limits us, when it comes to meeting the required hygienic standards,’ she pleaded.
John Rutebuka, a resident of the area told The New Times that the operation was long overdue. He lamented that restaurant and bars with poor hygiene were responsible for people’s ill health.
“The kitchen staff and food handlers in restaurants and bars are a common source for bacterial and viral contamination of food. Business should be conducted in ideal hygienic and safety conditions,” he said.