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Kiosk owners want allocation of stalls in Mbarara market halted

Mbarara market

Mbarara, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | A section of vendors under the Mbarara Central Market Kiosk Owners Association want the allocation of stalls and lockups in the new market halted until the court case is disposed of.

The wrangle between the then Mbarara municipality and traders over the ownership of Mbarara central market started in 2014 affecting plans to redevelop it. The situation worsened after Mbarara municipal council acquired a title for plot 2-4 along Mbaguta street, which hosts the market.

As a result, kiosk owners successfully petitioned the High Court and placed a caveat on the land.

But while commissioning the new market, the Local Government Minister Raphael Magyezi said that the market belonged to Mbarara City Council and not the Kiosk Owners Association.

Joy Night Mpiirwe, Chairperson of the aggrieved Kiosk Owners says they were allocated land to construct kiosks by the then Mbarara Municipal Council in 1989 and were fully given the powers as bonafide occupants on the same land.

She says they want the process of relocating to the new market halted until the case is disposed of and an agreement is reached.

Mpiirwe says they were shifted to the independence park as kiosk owners and want to return as lockup owners in the new market as per the agreement they had with the government in 2018.

Ndabatata Ngabirano, Secretary of Mbarara Central Market Kiosk Owners Association Ltd says they applied in 1983 to get space, a request that was approved by the municipal council in 1989.

Muhammed Nyombi, the Chairperson of the Central Market Vendors Association says the matter is being handled by the City Council authorities.

Robert Mugabe Kakyebezi, the City Mayor said he is ready to sit with the aggrieved vendors if they agree to settle the case out of court.

Allocation of lockups/stalls to the vendors is scheduled to start on April 11.

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