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Over 120 traders petition Kasese municipal authorities on market relocation

President Museveni commissions Kasese Central Market. File Photo

Kasese, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | More than 120 traders have petitioned the Kasese municipal council authorities through an appeals committee challenging their relocation to the new Kasese Central Market.

The market is one of the several structures that were rebuilt under the Markets and Agricultural Trade Improvement Programme (MATIP-1) – a multi-million dollar project supported by the government and the African Development Bank. It is built to accommodate about 800 vendors in 467 stalls and 311 lockup shops.

The relocation exercise started last week, with traders occupying spaces reserved for food stalls, restaurants, salons, fruit and vegetable stands, and butcheries, among others. But some of the vendors and traders have raised complaints of double allocation of space, mismatches between names and allocated stall numbers, and missing names among others. They are also accusing some leaders of manipulating the process.

Josephine Babirye, one of the vendors says that the traders were not much involved both in the structural development of the facility and the relocation plans. She adds that the size of the allocated stalls is too small to handle any sizeable business.

Earlier, Kasese municipality announced that an independent space allocation committee had been put in place to ensure that all the vendors in the old market would be given priority in the new market. Isaiah Twesigye, the Kasese Municipal Town Clerk says the committee will review all complaints this week before the authorities start resettling other categories of traders.

He says there is a laid down procedure on handling the appeals advising traders to avoid persons who push them to seek legal redress. Twesigye adds that the committee was approved by the ministry of local government.

The town clerk says they have given a two month’s holiday to the traders so that they can fit in the new business environment.

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