By Paul Mzizi
The Gwanda municipality will soon be putting up Covid-19 compliant vending bays, a senior official has said.
Gwanda town mayor, Justone Mazhale said yesterday that council was making plans to construct structures that would be used by informal traders.
“We have secured assistance from the Ministry of Women’s Affairs, Community, Small and Medium Enterprises Development. They have said that they will construct vending bays in town. The UNDP has also come in and said they would set up vending bays that would be Covid-19 compliant. This will ensure that vendors are back in business but under strict conditions as prescribed by the Covid-19 regulations,” said Mazhale.
He said as council, they were working on putting up facilities that are hygienic and have proper ablutions that would meet Covid-19 regulations.
He said the setting up of facilities had taken time because of poor revenue inflows.
“We are constrained by lack of resources. Most rate payers rely on the informal sector. We are however making plans, despite all those setbacks. We have re-opened the Jahunda Terminus market as we have managed to meet all the requirements. It is now fully operational,” he said.
Mazhale said plans were also underway to set up a flea market along the Bulawayo- Beitbridge railway line.
“We have fenced and gravelled an area there. We will soon mark vending bays. Those who will operate from there will bring their own material to construct their stalls there using designs specified by the municipality,” said Mazhale.
Several meetings had been held with interested parties, he said.
Before the outbreak of the Corona virus in March this year, hundreds of people had besieged the small mining town, blocking streets by selling all manner of wares haphazardly.
Most Zimbabweans now rely on the informal sector for a living as the country faces a deep economic crisis that has led to the closure of many companies.