KAMPALA — Top Media talkshow host, Adam Al-mahadi Kungu has announced he will keep his hair and beards, in protest of the state’s coronavirus restrictions on salons.
The vocal journalist says this will go until government reverses its decision that has been described by critics as “selfish and unnecessary’.
Mr. Kungu, a talkshow host at Top Television and Radio who also writes for a local online publication told PML Daily that government has since March resolved to press salon operators and those who depend on them against the wall and that the continued closure has no justification.
He says many people solely depend on saloons for survival, and “their continued closure is absolutely unnecessary at this time”.
He called for immediate formulation of appropriate Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for businesses like saloons.
“Just like traders, taxi drivers and owners, Boda Boda cyclists, Salon attendants were as well affected by the pandemic. Government has found ways for allowing some of these people to resume work, but remained tight-lipped on saloons, why? I have two saloon attendants whom I have been feeding since the announcement of the closure and I really painfully see what they go through to sustain their families, it is bad, it is ugly,” Kungu said on Thursday.
“It really pains to see other people aided to work by government through putting up guidelines for them to follow and neglect the saloon attendants. Four months without earning anything yet some other Ugandans are working is unfair,” he added, saying this justified his decision, and that, “him being the voice of the voiceless,” he has severally used the pen and microphone to reach out to government to put in place guidelines for saloons to open and resume business but his efforts have hit a dead end.
“After failing to make headways in having saloons opened using my different media platforms, I have now decided not cut off my hair and the beards until government listens and acts. SOPs for salons can be put in place and our brothers and sisters start work again,” he said noting that, “We can’t look on until we see them die of stress and hunger.”
Saloons were among the businesses whose operation were suspend by government on March 18, as one of the measures to stem the spread of COVID-19 and enforce discipline.