By Norah Owaraga
On Saturday, 26th October 2019, I was preparing lunch and my cooking gas ran out. It was not a major crisis for I was able to complete cooking our lunch using a charcoal stove, borrowed from my neighbour, my landlord, my father; and for whom I was making the lunch in the first place.
At around 5 p.m. I drove to Total Entebbe Town to exchange my empty cylinder and buy one with cooking gas. Yes, cooking with a charcoal stove is not my cup of tea … I parked right next to the outdoor metallic cooking gas stall, signalling that I had gone to buy cooking gas.
There was a guy in uniform (overall that is customary for mechanics to work in) nearby and I told him I needed to buy cooking gas. He asked me to wait until the one responsible came and he went in search for the responsible one.
A few minutes later the responsible one showed up, offloaded from my car my empty cylinder and loaded a full one into my car. I had cash in hand, but before I handed the cash over to him, I requested for a receipt. The responsible one asked me to just take the gas without the receipt for he was too busy to take the time to write one.
I said no, I needed a receipt for the UGX 118,000 (one hundred and eighteen thousand shillings) I was paying for the gas. Well, the compromise we reached was he offloads the gas, reloads back my empty cylinder and I go and buy gas from elsewhere.
He offloaded and reloaded and after about 20 minutes or so I left Total Entebbe Town with no gas, not because there was no gas, it was there, but the responsible one was too busy to write a receipt. I drove off to Total Kitoro, also in Entebbe, and my experience there was just wow!
The manager herself came out of her office, offloaded my empty cylinder and had one of the employees under her supervision bring a full cylinder which he placed besides my car. She then proceeded to generate a receipt for UGX 118k; I paid the cash; she gave me the receipt; the full cylinder was loaded and I was off on my way in less than 10 minutes at the most.
You may want to know that a short walking distance away from Total Kitoro, there is a supermarket that also sells Total cooking gas, but at UGX 123k or was it UGX 125k?
I take a bow for you successful business owners in Uganda for it is clear that you have to do much more go make it … And for you who are struggling, perhaps you may want to look closely at your human resources and or your pricing policy.