There is an ongoing
improvement in the Markets at Kalerwe pending reopening by Kampala Capital City
Authority KCCA. There are over ten markets at Kalerwe including Kajubi,
Bivamuntuuyo, Freedom, Farmers, Ssemuguwa and Muluya Market among others.
They host over 1000
vendors. On April 03rd, the
Kampala Affairs Minister, Betty
Amongi ordered the closure of the markets for failure to maintain the four
meter physical distancing as directed by the president to control the spread of
the deadly Corona Virus.
Vendors were given two
days to organise themselves before the markets are reopened. The vendors
immediately started cleaning and spacing their stalls. On April 9th,
a team of KCCA officials led by the Executive Director, Eng. Andrew Kitaka
inspected the market and said it was still disorganised.
The vendors have now accelerated
their efforts to improve their stalls and reduced the number of stalls by more
than half. Others that previously used umbrellas have put up proper shelter
comprising iron sheets and timber pillars. Saidi Waiswa, the
Chairman Freedom Market, says they have invested about six million to paint
offices and stalls and put up more shelters.
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Bivamuntuuyo Market has painted all its stalls and cleaned the cemented floor.
Our reporter visited the market on Thursday Morning and found the vendors painting
shelters for chicken. James Kaana, one of the market leaders, said they are now
ready to resume work, adding that vendors will now operate in shifts.
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Muluya Market has also reduced the number of stalls and covered the remaining
ones with carpets. These were however still arranging stalls and removing the remaining
garbage from the market. Nevertheless some of the markets are yet to re-arrange their stalls, something
that some of their colleagues are unhappy about. These include Ssemuguwa,
Farmers Hill and Ssennoga Markets.
One angry market leader said "Today I don't want to talk to you. We
are frustrated. They were supposed to open the markets tomorrow (Friday) but
some of our colleagues are just starting work. Now like Mugisha, he told the
KCCA officials today that for him he is doing his things and he should be left
alone. KCCA knows this as one market and they cannot open before all of us are
condemned a one Mugisha said to be the Chairman of Ssemuguwa Market for being
arrogant and delaying works. URN visited Ssemuguwa Market and found vendors
putting up shelters and constructing new stalls as others were being covered
At Farmers Hill they
were casting concrete on the floor. Robert Lukwago from Ssemuguwa says
they were delayed by boundary issues with their neighbors and KCCA.
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KCCA is expected to
inspect the markets on Monday and decide whether to reopen them or not.