Nevanji Munyaradzi Chiondegwa
Due to the scourge of space barons and violence which has erupted in Harare Metropolitan Province, trading or operation of flea markets and second hand clothes (mabhero) in undesginated areas has been banned.
This was said by Tafadzwa Muguti, the Secretary of State for Provincial Affairs and Devolution of Harare Metropolitan Province in a Press Statement following the latest spate of violence in Mbare.
Mr Muguti said, “On the 13th of September 2022 violence erupted in Mbare as two groups of youths clashed at the Mupedzanhamo Market. Members of the public were affected as many had to flee for dear life whilst traffic came to a halt in fear of vehicles being stoned.”
To their credit, Police swiftly react and managed to restore sanity and made several arrests in the process. Investigations have reveales that the violence was as a result of two camps fighting for open spaces which they illegally lease to vendors and traders.
Mr Muguti further said, “Our Province is at present battling with these space barons who hide behind political lines working with corrupt officials in order to fleece traders. The same people have now created mafia styled syndicates that violently take over parking spaces, bus stops, markets and intimidate vendors.”
He also said that on 2 September 2022 law enforcement agencies intervened and arrested another syndicate that had invaded Fourth Street Bus Terminus intending to convert the bus parking bays in to second hand clothing (mabhero) trading spaces.
He further said, “In response to the increased level of indiscipline and lawlessness we shall no longer allow any trading or operation of flea markets in parking bays and undesignated places.”
Mr Muguti revealed that his office has since engaged the City of Harare in the reopening of their Mupedzanhamo Market, the construction of a state of the art SME Complex at Shawasha Grounds and the immediate reconstruction of a modern GlenView Furniture Industrial Park which recently burnt down for the eleventh time.
He finished saying, “Furthermore, we have encouraged the City of Harare, Chitungwiza Municipality, Ruwa Local Board and Epworth Local Board to urgently consider Public Private Partnerships (PPPs) for the construction of more work spaces, markets and business centres in every ward for our vendors and small medium enterprises (SMEs) in the Province.”