Vendors from the old market in Mzuzu City have started rebuilding permanent shops at the market in order to secure their goods and beautification of the city.
The market, which was established in early 90s and was known as Freedom Square but currently nicknamed as Taifa market, was previously made of timbers locally called ‘zigwagwa’ despite been in existence for quite some time.
Taifa Market Chairperson, Halifa Saidi, says the development has been a response to number of influences amongst them are security reasons.
He said these buildings put the site at high risk of catching fire and theft. This forced the vendors to request Mzuzu City Council (MCC) for improvement of the market.
“Zigwagwa structures are prone to damages due to bad weather like wind and fire accidents,” he said.
Taifa chairperson says the multi-million project is expected to be completed between the months of July and August 2022.
Mzuzu City Council spokesperson, MacDonald Gondwe, recalls that the city council has been receiving requests from vendors for some time and the council realized the importance of granting them permission to go on with the development.
Gondwe also notes that the development has been facilitated as partial fulfilment of the 2063 agenda which demands good infrastructure that will drive the economy forward.
“We would love to have structures that befit a city and it is our plan for all shops to have the same layout plan, and designs recommended by town and country planning committee” Gondwe says.
He urged the vendors to join hands and build their shops according to the agreed terms and conditions.
“We would like encourage the vendors to work with collaborative efforts so that we take the city to required levels,” he says.
On her part, business lady at the market, Tabetha Kayira, says the development will strengthen security and improve the ambience of the market.
“With the coming in of this project, the outlook of the market has really changed and the market is looking very organised and beautiful. This will attract a lot of customers all over Malawi and even from abroad,” Kayira says.
Kayira appreciated MCC for their timely response towards the proposal to revamp the market.