By Juliet Waiswa
KAMPALA - A Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) enforcement team stormed Luzira Stage Seven market in company of the Police and razed down illegal structures, insisting that the market was illegal.
The early morning operation saw the structures located along Luzira Port Bell road brought down amid protests and sharp verbal utterances from the angry traders.
One of them, wailing, said she should be married off to one of the enforcement officers since she was left with nothing.
Over 300 people worked in the market.
The KCCA officials insisted that they had long warned the traders several times before to leave the illegal structures, but that they had refused to heed to the directives.
“We sent out warnings to these people three months ago. We even sent out reminders on Monday but they remained adamant,” said Robert Kalumba, KCCA’s assistant spokesperson told New Vision.
An image grab showing KCCA officers in the early morning demolition exercise.
KCCA says they had warned the traders prior to the exercise, but that they did not heed to the directive.
The Thursday exercise was one of the moves by KCCA to restore order in the city.
Kalumba explained that the vendors were told to relocate to Luzira market which is about 200 meters away from the illegal market but that they were unmoved.
On their part, the vendors claimed that when they held a meeting with KCCA officials on Monday, they were assured that they had been given more time to continue operating their businesses.
One of them said: “We were sure that KCCA had given us up to next week.”
They have been paying market dues of sh20,000 to unknown persons who claim to be collecting the money on behalf of KCCA, said Kalumba.
He warned that KCCA will continue to demolish illegal structures which are not gazette areas of KCCA, maintaining that the city body is only enforcing laws that are in place.