Pumula vendors engage councillor to address livelihood issues

Vendors in Bulawayo’s Pumula suburb convened with their councillor on Wednesday, to address various challenges affecting their livelihoods. 

Among the key topics discussed were the provision of vending bays, licensing, sanitation facilities, cleanliness, and access to water. 

During the meeting, vendors unanimously agreed to contribute US$1 each towards the maintenance of newly provided public toilets. The remaining funds will be allocated towards procuring a JoJo tank to mitigate water shortages experienced during shedding periods. 

Simbarashe Ndoro, chairperson of the Ward 17 vendors, expressed satisfaction with the recognition and support received. 

 “We were recently provided with a toilet, and now we are working towards securing vending bays. The local authority has advised us to purchase cement, and they will assist in the installation of vending bays,” Ndoro remarked. 

Reflecting on past challenges, Ndoro noted their proactive approach during the COVID-19 pandemic, where they secured 150 vending licenses.

He outlined their vision to establish a unified vending area, appealing to potential donors for support in achieving this goal. 

Councilor Sikhululekile Moyo reiterated the importance of adherence to vending procedures.

“We met with the vendors and informal traders to discuss the challenges we face as the vendors, there were reports that vendors operating in undesignated places were getting arrested and they were saying they don’t want to experience the same situation. We had to explain to them that there is a way for them to get their vending licenses and be able to pay their monthly rentals so that they can be free when conducting their business,” she said. 

She addressed concerns raised by vendors regarding arrests for operating in unauthorised areas and urged vendors to comply with regulations. 

Cllr Moyo also highlighted the communal effort to maintain hygiene standards, with vendors agreeing to contribute towards the upkeep of the provided toilets. She acknowledged the challenges faced in collecting contributions, particularly through WhatsApp. 

Additionally, Cllr Moyo announced plans for a weekly clean-up campaign to combat diseases like cholera and diarrhoea.

Thabani Ncube, Assistant Director of Town Planning for the City of Bulawayo, outlined the municipality’s initiatives to support informal trading.  

These efforts include identifying designated vending sites within shopping centres, schools, and hospitals, as well as establishing wholesale markets to attract vendors away from the city centre. 

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button