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Ugandan men face 7 years in jail for selling roasted grasshoppers in airplane

Two Ugandan men now face seven years in jail for selling roasted grasshoppers on a Uganda Airlines plane.

Paul Miburi will now be prosecuted after a video of him selling a local grasshopper delicacy known as Nsenene aboard Uganda Airlines, went viral on social media platforms. His friend, Hajib Kiggundu who recorded and uploaded the video on TikTok, has also been arrested. The two men deal in electronics, cellphones and accessories.

Security officers arrested Mubiru and Kiggundu on Sunday November 28, when they arrived from Dubai aboard Uganda Airlines flight 445.

As some passengers were boarding, Mubiru, in a video that went viral on social media over the weekend, was seen selling grasshoppers from a big blue polyethene bag on board. He would scoop a handful of grasshoppers and pack them in a transparent polyethene bag at 10,000 Shillings (US$2.80).

Spokesperson of the Uganda Police Force, Fred Enanga said the two businessmen have been charged with three counts of common nuisance behaviour, negligence, and refusal to follow lawful inflight instructions.

Paul and Hajib are being charged with “negligence act” likely to cause the spread of an infectious disease, namely COVID-19 contrary to Section 171 of the Penal Code Act, 1950, and common nuisance, contrary to section 160 of the Penal Code Act behaviour while on board. They are also accused of refusing to follow lawful instructions while onboard, contrary to Civil Aviation security regulations, 2012.

Enanga also confirmed the video was recorded by Kiggundu, who later shared it on Tiktok and other social media platforms, drawing criticism and praise from the general public. He noted that while passengers can carry roasted grasshoppers, Mubiru acted illegally by selling the grasshoppers on board. Mubiru and Kiggundu also allegedly refused to follow inflight instructions.

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