Market stalls built years ago in central Giyani in Mopani District, Limpopo, were never allocated to hawkers.
Photo: Bernard Chiguvare, GroundUp
- Market stalls built in central Giyani, Mopani District, Limpopo, years ago were never allocated to hawkers.
- They are now overgrown and people say the place is a hangout for criminals.
- The municipality says it is busy registering hawkers and will allocate the stalls.
Residents are asking why market stalls built in central Giyani, Mopani District, Limpopo, more than seven years ago were never allocated to hawkers.
Situated behind a Shoprite, the stalls were meant for the town’s hawkers. They are now overgrown with bushes. According to the hawkers, this had become a place for criminal activities.
GroundUp saw several men hanging around the stalls and was warned by locals not to go near them, and muggings take place in that area.
Community leader Thembani Chauke said they would like to know why the municipality never allocated the stalls.
But Giyani Municipality spokesperson Steven Mavunda said: “Due to its location, the market stalls are unattractive to the hawkers who prefer to trade at overcrowded places like the Giyani CBD taxi rank.
“Ideally, the municipality wants to reduce overcrowding and promote cleanliness around town by confining hawkers to a controlled trading environment.”
However, hawkers said they wanted to use the stalls.
Jackson Mdaka has three makeshift stalls around town, selling vegetables, cosmetics and food.
“I have been a hawker for more than 10 years. When it rains there is no business … I would have loved to be at the constructed market stalls, but I wonder why the municipality is not allocating anyone these market stalls,” he said.
Mdaka added it would be better for him to have his three stalls under one roof. “As it is, I have to walk up and down several times to monitor what is going on at different stalls.”
Another hawker, who did not wish to have her name published, said she was happy when she saw the stalls being built, and thought she would be allocated one.
Mavunda said Mayor Shibambu Basani had rolled out a programme identifying and registering all hawkers in the CBD to allocate the stalls, but progress had been hampered by the lockdown, adding the process was now under way again.
He added the municipality was not aware of any criminal activities taking place in that area.
GroundUp obtained the tender document number for the construction of the stalls and found it was to close in October 2011, but could get no further information as to the cost and exact date of the completed construction.
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