Multimedia: Vendors brace for war

A POTENTIALLY explosive fight is looming in Harare today as thousands of vendors yesterday vowed to resist a government directive to relocate to “dusty” sites.

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Town Clerk Tendai Mahachi insisted that all was set for the relocation to the different sites despite indications the areas were not conducive as they have no proper facilities including stalls and toilets.

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Zimbabwe Informal Traders Organisation (Ziso) official Promise Mkhwananzi said it would be business as usual and vendors were ready to defend their “workstations”.

“It’s business as usual because government has not provided any alternative, so we have no choice, but to stay in the streets,” he said.

The proposed vending site at Coventry Holding Bay in Harare.
The proposed vending site at Coventry Holding Bay in Harare.

“We call for government to come up with a lasting solution. Whatever government will try to do, we will respond as it comes.”

National Vendors’ Union of Zimbabwe director Samuel Wadzai said hawkers would not be intimidated by threats from government to use force to remove them from the central business district (CBD).

NAVUZ director Samuel Wadzai.
NAVUZ director Samuel Wadzai.

“We are very clear we will not allow vendors to go anywhere because I don’t remember government giving an alternative,” Wadzai said.

“There is no clarity and we don’t know of the new sites. Those mentioned do not accommodate the number of vendors in town.

The proposed vending site near City Sports Centre.
The proposed vending site near City Sports Centre.

“They are oversubscribed and cash barons are waiting. Government has to deal with those critical issues first.”

Registration was on at the Tsiga open space in Mbare, City Sports Centre, Fourth Street and Coventry Holding Bay, but the turnout was pathetic.
Of concern to some of the vendors was the dirt and dust at the open sites, which had no facilities.

Some vendors register as informal traders at the vending site near City Sports Centre in Harare.
Some vendors register as informal traders at the vending site near City Sports Centre in Harare.

One of the vendors, Lorcadia Muchando, claimed all the sites were clandestinely allocated.

“We were told to come here, but what I suspect is that the stalls are full already,” Muchando complained. “We were told there are no places in town, but we wonder how that is possible as we saw no one from council to register us.”

Lazaros Kambira holds his vending card and ID after he registered as an informal trader at the vending site near City Sports Centre on June 25.
Lazaros Kambira holds his vending card and ID after he registered as an informal trader at the vending site near City Sports Centre on June 25.

Mahachi said council would engage law enforcement agents to ensure order.

“Go to corner Samora Machel Avenue and Chinhoyi Street, you will see vendors vacating to that place,” he said.

“It will accommodate more than 1 000 vendors with container booths.

On Wednesday, thousands of vendors marched to Parliament Building in Harare where they presented a petition calling on government to abandon plans to move them from the city centres.
On Wednesday, thousands of vendors marched to Parliament Building in Harare where they presented a petition calling on government to abandon plans to move them from the city centres.

“We are not concerned about those who say there is not enough space because we are working to ensure there is something. Space we will provide.”

Government gave vendors up to today to move out of the CBD.

On Wednesday, thousands of vendors marched to Parliament Building in Harare where they presented a petition calling on government to abandon plans to move them from the city centres.

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9 Comments

  1. Concerned citizen

    Who will buy for them out there at a dirty place like that. Wonder what it would look like when raining. That is no solution at all. Improvement of economy will drive most vendors out of time with no effort at all.

  2. robert mwamvani

    the government need to sympathize with vendors, companies are retrenching people everyday and they are left with no solution for the survival of their families.

  3. Hearers are storytellers

    We are prepared to face the militia of this rogue and tyranical government at any cost….

  4. mugabe wants all zimbabwean to be the poorest in in world. Y god you gave us this creature to rule us. Who doesn’t care about his owner people

    1. mafira kureva

      from your own information mugabe is not a Zimbabwean that’s why he hates all of us so much

  5. Iuo mbavha inonzi Mahachi iyo ka iyo. God will judge you

  6. tarwadziwa veduwe hapana kusiri kufa lets figth for change

  7. ndopaunoona mumwe achinovhotera pazunupo zvakare, wotoshaya kunzwisisa kuti zvikumbofambasei????

  8. Comrade Never Ever !

    Chinasa-Mama confirmed the zpf Govt’s intentions on collecting taxes from the informal sector, the idea is centred on getting every vendor on the register, a massive cash cow for the corrupt imbeciles. Wake-up zimboz…! Please Africa Arise….!!!

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