In 2014, Bugembe town council relocated more than 200 street vendors from the main road to the various shops and arcades within the town. Some of the vendors moved to Gulume, Nakanyonyi, Cathedral and Maternity roads among others.
Vendors in Bugembe town council market are accusing the authorities for illegally allocating spaces to roadside vendors following their eviction a year ago. In 2014, Bugembe town council relocated more than 200 street vendors from the main road to the various shops and arcades within the town.
Some of the vendors moved to Gulume, Nakanyonyi, Cathedral and Maternity roads among others. Before relocating the vendors, they signed a memorandum of understanding with the town council and Bugembe market vendors to the effect that they will not return to the streets.
However, in December 2015, some Bugembe town council officials allegedly pocketed bribes from some of the vendors to allocate them space along Dalia, Gulume streets and Jinja â€“ Iganga highway near Bugembe town council market. The move has drawn protests from vendors in Bugembe town council market led by their chairperson, George Kawudhu. Sarah Aliyinza, one of the market vendors claims that a friend paid Shillings 500,000 to one of the council officials he declined to name in exchange for space on the street to operate from for the next one year.
Aliyinza fears that such illegal allocations may affect vendors like her who operate in Bugembe central market yet they also have to pay 2000 Shillings in market dues. John Walugembe, another vendor claims that some town council officials have been secretly moving around to extort bribes from those who want to get space along the streets.
David Gulale, the town clerk, Bugembe town council says all those on the streets are operating illegally. He says his enforcement team has arrested several street vendors in Bugembe town council and confiscated their property in the last three months. Gulale however, promises to follow up claims that some town council officials as extorting bribes from the street vendors to allow them operate.