Jinja a top tourism destination
For its proximity to the hydroelectricity power plant- Owen falls dam and fresh water bodies Lake Victoria and River Nile, the growth of Jinja into an industrial hub of Uganda and the East African region was inevitable.
As early as the pre-independence era, Jinja town located 80 kilometres east of the capital Kampala was a favourite destination for both local and foreign investors. They established industries that consequently attracted multitudes of job seekers from all over the region in search of employment opportunities.
Buoyed by its strategic location along the Trans-African highway from the port coast of Mombasa, on the northern shores of Lake Victoria and eastern bank of the world’s longest river Nile as well as the presence of European and Asian settlers, Jinja made great economic strides in the 1950s and 1960s.
However, the economic slump witnessed following the expulsion of Asians in 1972 by former president Idi Amin, probably hit Jinja the hardest as many of the successful factories then were under their management.
There was a decline in production capacity of mighty factories like British American Tobacco (BAT), Chillington, Nytil, Grain Milling, Steel Corporation of East Africa, Papco, Dunlop which employed thousands of people from across the country, while others totally collapsed.