Byo reg­is­ters 6,000 ven­dors

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Business Chronicle - Oliver Kazunga Se­nior Busi­ness Re­porter

THE Bu­l­awayo City Coun­cil ( BCC) has so far reg­is­tered over 6,000 in­for­mal traders in its com­puter data­base as the lo­cal au­thor­ity in­ten­si­fies its vend­ing man­age­ment pro­gramme.

The city has a to­tal of 7 206 reg­is­tered in­for­mal traders.

Brief­ing the me­dia at the coun­cil cham­bers on Tues­day, BCC as­sis­tant di­rec­tor for hous­ing and com­mu­nity ser­vices Mr Dic­tor Khu­malo said the lo­cal au­thor­ity was also in the process of li­cens­ing air­time ven­dors.

“In terms of vend­ing man­age­ment in the city, the progress is as fol­lows: we’ve a to­tal of 7 206 reg­is­tered in­for­mal traders in the city; we still have a lot of va­cant or un­oc­cu­pied bays citywide, which are 6 132 and most of these bays are lo­cated in some ur­ban shop­ping cen­tres,” he said.

“We’re also in the process of com­put­er­is­ing all our in­for­mal traders, to that end we’ve cap­tured 6 076 in­for­mal traders in our data­base.”

Mr Khu­malo said each and ev­ery shop­ping cen­tre in the city has an area des­ig­nated for vend­ing and coun­cil is en­cour­ag­ing res­i­dents to take up the vend­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties ex­ist­ing in terms of the planned va­cant bays.

In terms of vend­ing de­vel­op­ments in the city in line with the Gov­ern­ment’s di­rec­tive in 2015 to re­store san­ity in the in­for­mal trad­ing sec­tor, he said BCC has de­vel­oped and des­ig­nated a ma­jor trad­ing site ad­ja­cent to High­landers Football Club house. The trad­ing site has about 800 vend­ing bays. “The whole site has been sur­faced with 770 bays hav­ing al­ready been des­ig­nated. To im­prove light­ing, we’ve in­stalled lights there and a toi­let has been re­ha­bil­i­tated for use by the traders,” he said, adding that plans are in progress to erect shel­ters ahead of the next rainy sea­son.

As part of vend­ing man­age­ment by coun­cil, BCC has also re­viewed vend­ing fees with ar­rears that had ac­crued over the years be­ing writ­ten off in Jan­uary this year.

is was a re­sponse to a re­quest by the ven­dors who in­di­cated that they could not af­ford pay­ing the ac­cru­als.

“Also to try and en­cour­age vend­ing in the west­ern ar­eas, the rentals were re­duced to $5 and in the city cen­tre, they’re av­er­ag­ing $11,50. All ven­dors are re­quired to have trad­ing li­cences and the li­cence fee is $23 per year,” said Mr Khu­malo.

Last year, the Gov­ern­ment di­rected all lo­cal author­i­ties to for­malise in­for­mal traders to re­store san­ity.

Like other lo­cal author­i­ties, Bu­l­awayo has in the past not been spared from mis­un­der­stand­ings with ven­dors over le­gal vend­ing points where they can op­er­ate from.

This has seen mu­nic­i­pal po­lice get­ting in­volved in run­ning bat­tles with the ven­dors con­fis­cat­ing their wares as part of ef­forts to com­pel them to con­duct their op­er­a­tions at des­ig­nated ar­eas. — @okazunga.

Mil­le­nium Footwear Di­rec­tor Stuart Si­mali stresses a point to the Min­is­ter of Small and Medium En­ter­prises and Co­op­er­a­tive De­vel­op­ment Sithembiso Ny­oni dur­ing a tour of the com­pany in Bel­mont yes­ter­day.Look­ing on are the co-founder and Ad­min­is­tra­tor Sikhange­zokuhle Si­mali (hold­ing a file) and min­istry of­fi­cials

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