HARARE City Council and various street vendors’ associations have jointly embarked on a drive to flush out unregistered vendors operating at undesignated points starting next week.
Addressing a Press conference in the capital yesterday, Onismo Gore, president of the Harare Informal Traders’ Association, said the programme was aimed at bringing sanity to the city.
The association is an umbrella body for 20 unions representing vendors.
“We have agreed with law enforcers that anyone caught outside the agreed trading places should be arrested,” Gore said.
He said as from January 2 next year, vendors who operate mostly from pavements and open spaces in the city will be asked to move to the 11 vending sites managed by the local authority.
“We will not hesitate to deregister any of our members who puts our reputation at stake,” Gore warned.
He, however, called on the city fathers to ensure that trading sites had the requisite infrastructure which include ablution facilities, adding that the current sites did not have adequate toilets.
“We need to uphold the image of Harare as the capital. Soon our country will be hosting the Sadc conference, there’s need to project a good image,” Gore said.
He, however, said they were not going to forcibly remove the vendors, but would send associations to go and apprise the vendors on the new initiative.
“The associations are going to tell all the vendors to go to the approved vending sites and pay vending fees to council. We are law abiding citizens.”
Meanwhile, secretary-general of the Harare Chamber of Small and Medium Enterprises Shepherd Sirewi said they would advocate for changes in the by-laws to allow them to be referred to as traders as the term was viewed as derogatory.
Over 5 000 out of an estimated 12 000 city vendors have been registered since August 22 of this year and some of them have already been allocated space within the designated areas.
Flea market operators will pay $3 daily for trading space, while fruit, vegetable, airtime, dried foods and newspaper vendors pay $1, the council said.
The approved central business district vending sites include Fourth Street (flea market, fruits and vegetables and dried foods), Charge Office ZRP Flea Market, Charge Office Vegetable Market (dried foods, fruits and vegetables), Julius Nyerere/Kenneth Kaunda (flea market), Market Square (flea market and dried foods), Speke/Cameroon (flea market), (7) George Silundika (flea market — Sundays only),(8) Park Street (flea market ad dried foods), Speke/Cameroon (vegetable market),(10) OK Cameroon (fruit and vegetables), and Chinhoyi/Samora Machel.