Last week, Gulu City Clerk Isiah Tumwesigye issued a directive to the public banning businesses along the streets, pavements, walkways, verandahs, backstreets, and corridors within the city effective July 1.
UPDF soldiers implement directives to evict road side vendors at Cerelenu Market along Gulu-Kampala Highway in Gulu City on Friday July 1 2022.
Council law enforcement personnel on Friday kicked off the eviction of vendors
in ungazzetted spaces along major streets.
The eviction comes barely a week after Gulu City Clerk Isiah Tumwesigye issued
a directive to the public banning businesses along the streets, pavements,
walkways, verandahs, backstreets, and corridors within the city effective July
The directive majorly targets street vendors, hawkers, and operators of taxis,
buses, lorries, Tricycles (Tuk tuk), and Pickup trucks.
City law enforcement personnel accompanied by police and UPDF soldiers deployed
heavily along the busy Gulu-Kampala highway to implement the directive.
Tumwesigye says that the move was
aimed at restoring trade order in the city.
He says the majority of those being evicted have defiantly chosen to
work from the streets despite gazetted spaces in the markets, bus terminals,
and shops within the city that are not being fully occupied.
Tumwesigye, the eviction is scheduled to take more than three days and urged
those affected to comply with the decision to avoid legal action.
But the majority of those evicted say the move was unfair considering the harsh
Among those affected are members of the Gulu city Interstate Transporters
Association, who load passengers aboard buses that ply the Kampala, Gulu, and
Musa Yasin, one of the members of the association notes that the ban on their
business will affect the livelihood of more than 30 members. He says the
space they have been relocated to by the city officials doesn't attract
passengers, unlike the busy streets where they had been loading their clients.
"Certainly this directive is harsh on us, most of the buses are now
passing through the Gulu-Juba highway instead of the city center and this means
we are losing money. We are asking the city authorities to review their
directives so that we are relocated to busy spaces," says Yasin.
But Tumwesigye maintained that the directive is final and was resolved
following consultation with various stakeholders.
Omaya, the Gulu Main Market Vendors Association Chairperson welcomed the
directive to evict roadside business operators saying it will help to improve
businesses in gazetted markets.
He says due
to unregulated businesses within the city, vendors in the gazetted market, especially the
Gulu Main market, had realized a decline in sales due to competition from
city authorities are right to evict those operating from the streets, our
vendors in markets are no longer making profits from sales because there are
many competitors on the streets. we believe trade order will resume," He
The City authorities have directed the affected vendors, street hawkers, and
bus operators to occupy spaces at Gulu Main Market, Kabedopong Market, Wilobo
Market, Layibi Central Market, Lamogi ber bus terminal, Gulu Main bus
park, and the new terminal at the former Abattoir.
Bureau Chief, West Acholi