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Workers’ MP Tables Bill Seeking to Allow Individuals Own Markets

According to Rwabushaija, the objective of the Bill is to reform the law relating to establishment and control of markets in Uganda, provide for the establishment and management of public and private markets, provide for licensing of private markets and others. The other objects of the Bill are to provide for registration of markets and vendors, provide for levying and collection of market fees and to repeal the Markets Act, Cap. 94.
Workers MP Margaret Rwabushaija tabled the Markets Bill before Parliament.

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Workers MP, Margaret Rwabushaija on Tuesday tabled before parliament the Markets Bill, 2021 that will allow individuals to own and set up markets.  

According to Rwabushaija, the objective of the Bill is to reform the law relating to the establishment and control of markets in Uganda, provide for the establishment and management of public and private markets, provide for licensing of private markets and others.

The other objects of the Bill are to provide for the registration of markets and vendors, provide for levying and collection of market fees and to repeal the Markets Act, Cap. 94.

Deputy Speaker, Anita Among sent the proposed law to parliament’s Local Government Committee for consideration.

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According to a copy of the Bill, the current Markets Act, Cap. 94 does not address the current needs of market development, management and administration that have evolved.

“The current Markets Act places the establishment and administration of markets solely in the hands of Government. Section 1 of the Markets Act, for example, prohibits any other person or authority other than the district administration, a municipal council and a town council within their jurisdictions, from establishing and maintaining a market,” reads part of the Bill.

It states that this legal regime was based on the economic structure at the time, during which period Uganda operated a planned economy where all elements of the economy were determined centrally by the Government.

 “However, with the advent of a liberalized economy, strengthened with the 1995 Constitution of the Republic of Uganda, Ugandans were granted the right to practice their professions and to carry on lawful occupation, trade or business. As a result of the economic and legal reforms that have evolved, there is a need to align the regulation of markets,” further reads the Bill.

Rwabushaija hopes that the bill will enhance revenue collection which is currently mismanaged and that it aims at expanding markets with a view of promoting revenue collection.

The Bill is also aimed at solving the street vendors and hawkers’ problems, among others since Uganda’s population is fast growing.   

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