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Mbarara City Authorities to Delay Allocation of Space to Vendors in New Market

Robert Mugabe Kakyebezi, Mbarara City Mayor says as the central market nears completion they have written to the Ministry of local government to guide on how the allocation should be done.
The Nearly Complete 21 Billion Shillings Mbarara Central Market (1)

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Mbarara City authorities have written to the Ministry of Local Government seeking guidance on the relocation of vendors to the newly constructed central market.

More than 700 vendors were temporarily relocated to Independence Park in 2017 to pave way for the reconstruction of the market.  The government has on four occasions extended the deadline for completion of the market after the contractor Roko Construction Company failed to meet the agreed deadline.

Roko was awarded the contract in 2018 under the World Bank Uganda Support to Municipal Infrastructure Development Program- USMID.

However, the 21 Billion Shillings market has faced several setbacks that included the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic, expiration of the contractors’ performance guarantees among others. The four-storied market is expected to accommodate more than 3,000 traders.

Robert Mugabe Kakyebezi, Mbarara City Mayor says as the central market nears completion they have written to the Ministry of local government to guide on how the allocation should be done.

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But Enos Tuhame, the City Councilor representing workers says that writing to the ministry was not necessary. He explains that last month, the Permanent Secretary Ministry of Local Government in October guided on the relocation guidelines.

Tuhame says that according to the guidelines, only vendors that were previously in the market should be considered.

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Muhammad Byansi, City councillor representing Mbarara City South A says as the city leadership is seeking guidance to avoid disagreements. Byansi also wants the city authorities to consider allocating roadside traders space in the new market to reduce congestion on city streets.

Nyombi Muhammad, the Chairperson of Mbarara Central Market Vendors Association wants the city leadership to meet the traders before seeking guidance from the Ministry.

Raphael Magyezi, the Minister for Local Government says that the city authorities should work together with the chairperson of the Market Vendors and give priority to traders who were shifted to the temporary market.

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