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JOC ‘blocks’ Mupedzanhamo flea market reopening’

Local News
Mupedzanhamo flea market

THE City of Harare yesterday claimed that the Joint Operation Command (JOC), the supreme organ for the co-ordination of State security in the country, is blocking the reopening of Mupedzanhamo flea market in the capital.

Mupedzanhamo has been closed for years now and vendors had resorted to using the open space outside the market to ply their trade.

A few weeks ago, they were chased away from the open spaces following violent clashes between alleged space barons from the ruling Zanu PF and Citizens Coalitions for Change (CCC) fighting for control of the money-spinning flea market.

Councillor Denford Ngadziore said traders were going to have a gloomy festive season after being barred from operating at the market.

“As Harare City Council, we are worried because JOC stopped the opening of the Mupedzanhamo flea market recently. They said they are avoiding violence,” Ngadziore said.

“A meeting was held at the Harare Metropolitan secretary Tafadzwa Muguti’s office, where JOC shot down proposals to reopen the flea market. We had hoped to open the flea market in October. We think that it is the right time to open the market after we talked to all warring parties.

“We wanted the market to have been opened before the festive season so that traders could benefit.”

Ngadziore said they would continue to engage relative authorities, including the police.

National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi yesterday told NewsDay Weekender that Ngadziore’s claims were baseless.

“I am not aware of the allegations. The allegations are baseless. These issues are co-ordinated by Harare Metropolitan provincial secretary. They should direct their complaints to that office. They should not soil the image of the police,” he said.

He said Muguti’s office was co-ordinating the issue of the flea market.

Muguti yesterday declined to comment over the matter.

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