Usafi Market vendors have asked Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) to create more taxi stages near the market so as to pull people to the market. Henry Mutibwa, the Chairperson Usafi Trader’s Association, says currently the traders spend most of their time idling around the market due to lack of customers.
“We request government and KCCA to fulfill the promise they made to create more taxi stages near Usafi so as to bring more people who will buy what we sell,” he said. According to Mutibwa, given the location of Usafi market outside the central business district, it doesn’t attract buyers.
However, Kiwanuka Ssentongo, one of the vendors accuses Mutibwa of failure to remind KCCA that lack of customers is the key challenge facing vendors. “You have walked around the market; you have seen many vendors sleeping because they don’t get customers to serve. We keep reminding our leaders to tell KCCA about the issue of bringing taxi stages closer,” Ssentogo said.
But in his reaction, Mutibwa said wherever he meets KCCA leaders, Kampala Minister and city councilors; he reminds them why taxi stages should be created near Usafi market. He promised to write a detailed letter to Jennifer Musisi, the KCCA Executive Director and Kampala Minister, Beti Kamya on the same issue.
Joseph Luwaga, the KCCA Markets Manager, who visited Usafi market on Tuesday morning assured traders that they will create new taxi stages before the end of this year. “We want to make sure that taxes operating in ungazetted areas especially those working along Entebbe road are brought near Usafi market. We don’t want to see Usafi market vendors suffer because of lack of customers,” Luwaga said.
He said KCCA is already constructing a parking lot at the market main entrance as requested by the vendors. There are 4000 vendors in Usafi market. According to Mutibwa, they took in 1083 vendors who were evicted from park yard market, adding that they are consulting with KCCA to create more space for additional vendors who wish to join Usafi market.
At least 427 vendors from the demolished Park Yard market failed to get space in Usafi Market.