Traders in Busia district have decried the sorry state of the temporary market. In 2018, Busia Municipality relocated over 3,000 traders from Busia main market at Solo A village in Western division to a 2-acre piece of land at Busia Integrated grounds along Jinja road to pave way for redevelopment.
The construction of the Shillings 25billion market commenced in April 2018. The traders say the temporary market in a sorry state. According to the traders, they operate in dilapidates shelters, which exposes them to direct sunshine and rain whenever there is a downpour. The traders use the old iron sheets and polythene to cover the shelters.
They also claim that the market is located almost 2 kilometers away from Busia town, which is distant for their customers. Dennis Achidi, Khalid Mugoya, Jennifer Samanya and Swaibu Lukuya are some of the vendors in the market.
They claim that the municipality dumped them at Busia Integrated grounds and left them to struggle on their own to erect shelters. Khalid Mugoya says that they face it rough whenever it rains.
Swaibu Lukuya, the chairperson of Fresh Food Vendors, says the situation in the market has continued to worsen because the old iron sheets and polythene papers they used to roof the shelters are won out.
Jennifer Samanya, a second-hand cloth dealer wonders why the authorities have failed to operationalize the new market that was commissioned by President Yoweri Museveni almost two months ago.
Dennis Achidi, a Matooke vendor says his bananas have started dry up due to exposure to direct sunshine while others are stolen at night due to look of a perimeter fence.
Vincent Okurut, the Busia Town Clerk, says the construction of the new market was completed. He says they have completed the cleaning the trader’s register and submitted it to the Trade Ministry and are waiting for the full list in two weeks’ time so as to allow the vendors to enter the modern market.
The African Development Bank funded the construction of Busia modern market under the Market and Agricultural Trade Improvement Program-MATIP-2. The market has the capacity to accommodate 2044 vendors.
President, Yoweri Museveni commissioned the market on December 1, 2021, during his campaign trail in Busia district.