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RCC orders over-due elections in Mbale Central Market

Mbale, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Ahamada Washaki, the Mbale Resident City Commissioner has tasked the city authorities to organize elections for the executive of Mbale Central Market. It follows complaints by some vendors against the Ayubu Madoi led executive for allegedly mismanaging the affairs of the market, financial impropriety and lack of transparency.

Madoi’s three year term of office, which started in 2015 expired in 2018. However, no elections have been held since then to either renew his mandate or elect new leaders. The vendors accuse Madoi of frustrating their efforts to conduct polls for the election of new leaders.

On Tuesday, a group of vendors and some members of the Madoi’s executive convened a meeting, which passed a vote of no confidence in the chairperson and replaced him with Muhammad Wafuba, a produce dealer.

The vendors accuse Madoi of mismanaging the affairs of the market, embezzling money collected in the market, swindling Shillings 12 million from their savings group and issuing fake receipts.

They also accused him of stealing horse pipes installed in the market for use during fire outbreaks, failure to account for the money collected in the market and being an absentee chairperson.

Madoi has dismissed all the allegations levelled against him by the vendors, saying that he will not vacate office until elections are held.  He says that the market master is the one accountable for the money collected from the vendors and not his executive.

To restore calm, the Mbale Resident City Commissioner, Ahamada  Washaki has tasked the market master to organize fresh elections as soon as possible. Washaki, who visited the market on Wednesday, stayed the decision by the vendors to pass a vote of no confidence in their chairperson.

He argued that although Madoi, is illegally in office, the right procedures should be followed to remove him. According to Washaki, a number of things are not going right in the market. He cited the vandalism of market properties and failure by the executive to present a single report to security, saying there is a need for an audit of the market.

Annet Nandudu, the Mbale Central Market Master said that once elections are held, all the challenges in the market will be solved.

Muhamood Masaba, the Mbale Industrial City Division Mayor appealed to the RCC to institute a committee to investigate the anomalies that have been going on in the market. He also said that it is very important that elections are held immediately because of the mess identified in the market.

Abubakar Nabende, the Market Public Relations Officer, says that the chairperson never consults his executive on any decision that he takes yet his decisions affect the operations of the market.

“We have decided to replace him with another person because he doesn’t listen to us. He has mismanaged the affairs of the market including taking what belongs to the vendors like the horsepower pipes to his home,” he said.

Eddy Magyezi, a vendor said that the leadership of Ayubu Madoi has not been transparent enough and that they have been operating outside of the law since his term of office expired. He faulted the market executive for failing to consult vendors on any new changes.

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