The news of the impending completion of Jinja central market receives a lukewarm reception by the traders.
Construction of the market under the Markets and Agricultural Trade Improvement program- MATIP-1 officially began in October 2011. The task undertaken by Vambeco Enterprises Limited cost Ugx 36 billion and is expected to be complete by August 2014.
However, Jinja market traders have shown no sign of excitement at the development following reports that the new structure only has 4000 stalls as opposed to the 7000 stalls that were planned for.
The old market structure which was twice destroyed by fire had slightly over 3,000 stalls and was accommodating 5,000 traders.
John Mulaza, a fresh fruits vendor at Jinja central market says the registered vendors outnumber the stalls available at the new market.
Monica Aliyinza, another dealer says there are individuals who are soliciting for money from individuals seeking to acquire stalls at the new market. She says the men move around with yellow books to register those who pay between Ugx 200,000 to 500,000.
But Jackson Kabuzi, the Chairman Jinja central market says the vendors who owned stalls were registered in 2010 before the relocation although the number rose to over 7000 after some of the stall owners rented out their stalls to other vendors. He is optimistic however that they will all be catered for in the new facility.
Alex Wabwiire, The Secretary of Jinja central market vendors association is certain that there are people spreading such malicious rumors to weaken the Jinja central market leadership and the local government policy.
David Kyasanku, Jinja municipal town clerk says all the registered vendors lists are filed at Jinja municipal council offices and will not be tampered with.