Vendors at Ntchisi Boma and surrounding markets in Thursday marched to the district council offices to present a petition in which they listed down a number of grievances on what they described as poor service delivery by the council.
The vendors, who marched peacefully from the district community hall to the council secretariat, accused the council of not addressing their concerns despite being informed about the same sometime back.
In the petition, read on behalf of the group by Kennedy Kapakasa Phiri, the vendors are against selling or merchandise along the main road at the main market which is contributing to an increase in traffic accidents, lack of sanitation and hygiene at the market as well as lack of security.
The petition, presented to the council’s director of administration Andrew Likhoma, also says the council’s revenue is abused.
“We are also against having market at N’gombe Trading Centre which is close to the Boma and we would like the council to close the market,” reads part of the petition.
Lihoma commended the vendors for their peaceful march.
In a separate interview, the district commissioner James Manyetera said the council had been engaging vendors trading along the road to relocate and that if negotiations fail, it will engage the police [to use force].
On poor sanitation in markets, Manyetera said the council is aware of the situation and was planning to construct toilets using funds from development budget.
“However, our development budget has been trimmed by over half and we intend to approach Development Fund for Local Authorities which provides soft loans to local councils for assistance,” said Manyetera.