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Harare Vendors Vow To Defy Govt 7-day Ultimatum To Vacate CBD

Harare City Council Plans To Clamp Down On Illegal Activities

Harare Vendors Vow To Defy Govt 7-day Ultimatum To Vacate CBD

Vendors in Harare have vowed to defy a directive by authorities to vacate the Central Building District (CBD) and the streets they sell their wares from, saying they will only move if the Government creates jobs for them.

This comes after the Government gave the Harare City Council a seven-day ultimatum to remove the vendors out of the city due to rising cholera cases.

One vendor only identified as Varaidzo told NewZimbabwe.com that they cannot leave the CBD because they have to fend for their families. She said:

We need jobs. There are no jobs in the country. Ngavatipe mabasa kuState House ikoko. Where can we go from here? Most of us are widows and single mothers fending for our kids through vending.

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We went to school. If the economy was flourishing, we would be employed somewhere. We are not happy being on these pavements.

Let us join the government officials in their offices. I am sorry we cannot leave the CBD.

Another vendor who declined to be identified said the Government and the city council were to blame for the cholera outbreak as they are failing to collect rubbish, effectively manage sewage and fail to provide clean water. Said the vendor:

We have educational certificates under our pillows but we have no jobs. They must show us the doors of companies that are employing people right now. We will go there. How do we take care of our kids?

Council and government must work together to provide services to citizens. We have garbage all over the streets and raw sewage everywhere.

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Now we are being accused of fueling cholera in the city. Tell those authorities to put their houses in order because our wares are clean.

The Harare City Council spokesperson Stanley Gama said that the council held an emergency meeting on Thursday to find ways to deal with the government directive on illegal vending in the CBD.

Meanwhile, Councillor Womberaiishe Nhende responsible for SMSEs at Town House said the council already has designated places for vendors. He said:

Harare City had plans already in place to deal with city challenges. The City has designated places for vendors but they are coming back to the streets alleging proximity to their customers has been compromised.

This has created this ugly situation. Due to the outbreak that has been declared a national disaster, we have been begging the government to help the city improve on the vendor’s issues. Their livelihood is at stake.

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A state of emergency was recently declared in Harare over the cholera outbreak that has killed more than 150 people across the country.

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