Commotion rose in the Capital City Lilongwe after Lilongwe City Council (LCC) 3 days ago took a decision to raise market fees from k50 per day to k100 per day representing a 100 percent increment.

According to some concerned vendors the raise by 100 percent is not in order as some vendors might go the whole day without selling any merchandise as business is full of ups and downs.

Furthermore Vendors have questioned the justification given the markets are not well looked after.

However Lilongwe City Council (LCC) has justified its decision to raise daily market fees by 100 percent for its vendors, saying K50 per day was the lowest in the Central Region.

The council’s director of commerce and trade Genscher Mbwabwa made the remarks yesterday during a press conference saying the levies will help the council improve service delivery to residents.

‘’There is no justification for vendors to dispute [the new rates]. I am saying this because with the previous K50 [per day] they were paying, the council would collect K17 000 per day which would come up to almost K600 000 per month,” said Mbwabwa.

‘’Now when you begin deducting the salaries for market masters, then sweepers and other expenditures most markets were operating at a loss. We ended up getting money from city rates which was not even working.”

Mbwabwa further said that vendors will have no choice but to comply. He also said that the council has instituted an audit of accounts to look into market fee usage.
Unfortunately some LCC councilors earlier in the week claimed that 90 percent of the council’s revenue from market fees was going into people’s pockets due to poor systems in place.

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ZIMENE MUMAKONDA

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