Gweru City Council hikes illegal vendors penalty fees

By Stephen Chadenga

Vendors operating on undesignated sites in Gweru will have to pay $473
as fine while illegal hawkers will part with $946 according to a new
tariffs schedule for the 2020 budget.

“Illegal hawkers fine have been increased from $40 $946 and illegal
vendors fine from $20 to $473,”noted the schedule.

According to the tariffs schedule the license fees for both hawkers
and vendors have also been increased.

The hawkers licence fee per annum has been hiked to $1 182 from $150
and that of vendors from $30 to $709 per year.

Over the years illegal vendors have been causing headaches to city
fathers as they have occupied all corners of the central business
district owing to the prevailing economic hardships.

Although council introduced a few more vending sites it has failed to
deal with demand from the mushrooming informal traders.

Some vendors also leave their designated sites to sell their items at
more convenient shop pavements.

According to the schedule the new tariffs are effective January 1.

But MDC Midlands proportional legislator, Memory Mbondiya said instead
of introducing heavy penalties for vendors, council was supposed to
construct new vending sites.

“The majority of people are now in the informal sector because of the
current economic chaos,” she said.

“So instead of introducing heavy fines council should build more
vending sites. Those at the receiving end of the new fines are mostly
women who toil day and night trying to fend for their families.”