Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) has announced that it will this week start prosecuting both street vendors and buyers who abet hawking. The directive comes after repeated calls by the authority for vendors quit the streets of Kampala.
KCCA has over the last three years attempted to evict vendors who nonetheless return to the streets.
Now the KCCA is taking a stand to drag those who defy the orders to vacate the streets and other ungazetted parts in city to court.
Under the new directive, the authority will not only prosecute the vendors. All those who purchase goods from the vendors will also face the same punishment for abetting and aiding street vending.
Peter Kaujju, the Supervisor of Communications and Media Relations at KCCA, says all the arrangements are now in place to start the prosecutions. Kaujju says all vendors and potential buyers have been informed and sensitized.
Kauju says KCCA is to issue a final notice and thereafter start arresting the vendors and buyers immediately.
Kauju says his office has already drafted the final notice which will be issued this week. However, the threat by the KCCA has drawn the fury of some vendors who accuse the authority of allying with shop owners.
Titus Kabagambe, a hawker on Ben Kiwanuka Street, says many times when the authority constructs new facilities; they are left out because they do not have enough money to afford rent in such facilities. He cites the newly constructed Wandegeya market which he argues many vendors cannot afford to rent a stall in. He says KCCA should allocate a place where hawkers can operate and pay a fee for the location.
Helen Nakalema, on the same street, believes KCCA is acting unfairly. She wonders wonders why buyers must be forced to buy expensively from shops when here are cheaper alternatives available on the market.