Kisekka market, a sprawling hub of motor vehicle spare parts and accessories has been demolished. The demolition, with the traders ironically taking a lead role, marks the climax of the back-and-forth fighting over the redevelopment of the market.
Traders in the market, founded in the mid-1980s, have been operating in old lock-up shops, down-town along Kyaggwe road adjacent to the new taxi park.
The market management gave traders up to December 31 to relocate from the market to pave way for its reconstruction that is expected to start on January 3 next year. However, traders opposed to the plan secured a court injunction on September 19 to halt any development on the market land until the application filed before the High Court is disposed of.
Mr Robert Kasoro, the chairperson of the market, admitted they were aware of the injunction and denied flouting it. “The injunction exists but it’s not management demolishing. It’s the traders doing it in support of the proposed development,” Mr Kasoro said yesterday. “We shall abide by the court order and hopefully by the end of this year, the matter will have been resolved,” he added.
Many traders by Monday had already started moving their merchandise to nearby shops and kiosks, an indication of compliance. “You either accept development or development forces you to accept it. It’s you to choose but it’s better to let development take its course after all we all need it,” said Mr Rajab Makanga, a dealer in motorcycle spare parts.
Currently, the market has been a workplace for at least 10,000 people and it had 50,050 lockups and 330 stalls. Mr Kasoro said: “We plan to put up at least 2,000 unitsshops and stores in a modernised arrangement,” he said.
The construction will cost $23m (Shs63.5b) and the contract has been awarded to Rock Construction Limited. The construction is estimated to take two years. However, Mr Asad Bukenya who heads the group that is opposed to the redevelopment, said it will be unfair for their leadership to disregard the court order.
Mr Bukenya’s group protests demolition of the market without a temporary relocation plan. However, Mr Kasoro aised traders to seek shelter in the nearby arcades and markets for the period.
SOURCE: Daily Monitor