SPOTLIGHT UG: Kisaka argues for favourable trading spaces to lure street vendors

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The Executive Director at Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) Dorothy Kisaka has said the only way to eliminate street vendors from the city is by creating favorable trading spaces which can easily be accessible.

Kisaka made the remarks while appearing on the NBS SpotlightUG Show on Monday night. The discussion focused on “Delivering on the smart city agenda” where KCCA officials led by their boss Kisaka shared a number of plans aimed at making Kampala a better city.

Kisaka said the issue of trading space in the city needs to be resolved as soon as possible.

“If we do not create favorable trading spaces, we will always have street vendors in the city. Government has directed that we have a market in each city division. This will address the issue of trading spaces that must be accessible and smart, “she noted.

She revealed that at the moment Makindye division doesn’t have a single public market. KCCA has 16 markets which are public but Makindye doesn’t have one. In total there are 84 markets in the city.

KCCA recently announced that it fully took over and control of the city markets and abattoirs after banning old market leaderships and subsequent appointment of 36 new administrators.

The move, according to the authority, was meant to ensure full realisation of the presidential directive which gave KCCA the mandate to manage and control markets.

Kisaka said that they want people to have access to the markets where they can buy goods easily.

“As we speak today the news came out that the market law has come out. So we have an opportunity right there because the market law gives a lot of power and authority to city administrators to do certain things and we are going to use that but we have to create trading spaces,” she said.

With all the infrastructure development going on in Kampala, Kisaka said someone raised the issue of revenue collection wondering why there isn’t more revenue being collected. But she said their revenue collection has improved by 16%.

“The good news is that in the last one and half years we have increased our revenue collection. Now with the opening up of markets we can collect some little revenue from public transport area, outdoor advertisements. All these opportunities of collecting revenue will enable us to have money to invest in the city,” she said.

Eng. Justus Akankwasa, Director Engineering and Technical Services at KCCA noted that they are going to put in place roadside markets, adding that there is a provision for that.

“ So certain places will be designed in such a way that we put the roadside markets .We put enough space for cars to get off the road and go .This will be together with public toilets in this project,” he said.

In 2015 KCCA banned street vending in a bid to decongest the city and restore trade order, and subsequently acquired Usafi market in Kalitunsi-Mengo to resettle the evicted vendors.

However, vendors later abandoned the facility due to 'unfavourable conditions' and returned to the streets.

Efforts by KCCA to evict them from the streets have on several times hit a snag, triggering protests from traders who argue that their presence blocks customers from accessing their shops.

Traders have advised the government to build better facilities that are favourable for both vendors and customers.

In 2017, KCCA council gazetted some roads to be used by street vendors during evening hours. However, the technical wing declined to implement the resolution on grounds that it would worsen the situation.

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