By Itai Muzondo
Masvingo – The much criticised eviction of vendors has since gained ground in Masvingo after Masvingo City Council went around town Sunday vendors to vacate the streets or face brutal eviction from council security officers.
In an interview with Radio VOP, Masvingo City Council Town Clerk, Adolf Gusha confirmed the development and said council has reached a resolution that they will take action against any vendor who would re-appear in the streets of the ancient city.
“We did warn vendors to vacate the streets. Council has since reached a resolution to keep the city clean so we will definitely take action to any vendor who decides to re-appear in the streets of our beloved city,” Gusha confirmed.
Vendors who recently scoffed at the designated market however said they were not happy with the stalls they have been moved to saying there are no proper structures.
They also complained that their businesses have been affected since they are being crowded to an open market where there are less opportunities to grab customers.
Vendors also said sanitation facilities are not yet functional posing them a great health hazard.
“We are not happy about how the city council is treating us. The structures they are moving us to are not proper for selling and it further affects our business since we are crowded in one place giving many of us less chances of grabbing customers.
“To make the matters worse, sanitation facilities here are not even proper as we are operating with a toilet that was meant to accommodate only one hundred vendors and there is no properly built canteen. Open extretion is even common place thereby exposing us to an open health hazard,” noted a vendor Tarisai Katini who also stands as the Dr Grace Mugabe Trade Centre Fruit and Vegetation Market chairperson.
The outspoken Masvingo Residents Trust Chairperson, Prosper Tiringindi added that council should not have taken such action to vendors before they fully work on decentralising the markets and putting fully functional sanitation facilities at the market.
“It is not bad that sanity be brought to the streets but as a resident’s trust we believe that council should not have taken such action on vendors before they fully work on decentralising the markets and putting fully functional sanitation facilities at the designated market,” said Tiringindi.
Meanwhile, Gusha added that Masvingo City Council is set to put new by-laws to repeal the Hawkers and Street Vendors by-laws which were set in 1984. He said the purpose of the new by-laws is to enable council to have effective control of vending activities in the city.
“The council has since proposed new by-laws to repeal the Hawkers and Street Vendors by-laws which were set in 1984. The purpose of the new by-laws is to enable council to have effective control of vending activities in the city,” added Gusha.