NEBBI – Officials from the African Development Bank [AfDB] were in Nebbi Municipality days ago on an appraisal mission following the completion of the feasibility study for the construction of the Shs 32 billion Nebbi Modern Market.
Nebbi Municipality is one of the eight municipalities countrywide earmarked to benefit from the second phase of the Market Agricultural Trade Improvement Project [MATIP-2] under which eight modern markets are to be constricted, or are under construction.
According to the AfDB, the Government OF Uganda sent in all the required documentation to support the construction of the modern market which will improve the socio-economic transformation of vendors when completed.
Dr. Mark Eghan a principal agricultural Economist at AfDB said since there is a planned relocation of market vendors from the current market structure, it paves the way for the construction of the first-ever modern market in Nebbi Municipality.
The bank [AfDB] doesn’t want vendors to be displaced without an alternative as a result of the construction. There must be an alternative location suitable for the vendors to continue doing business,” Eghan said.
The acting commissioner Ministry of Local Government, Eng. Faisal Kikulukunyu Ssali said the construction of the market, which should have started in 2021 delayed due to limited resources.
Kikulukunyu further noted when completed, the market will facilitate cross-border trade between Ugandans and Congolese who mainly trade in agricultural produce.
The chairman Nebbi Market Vendors’ Association, Jatex Opio Janega urged the government to speed up the construction of the market, saying the current market structure has limited space.
“If the modern market is completed, it will house over 12,000 vendors,” Opio said, adding that the current market is congested with 7,000 vendors.
He added that the market vendors operating where the new market is to be set up are ready to relocate to the temporary location being constructed by the Municipal authorities in partnership with private actors.
The area Member of Parliament for Nebbi Municipality, Hashim Suleiman appealed to the residents to closely monitor the project to avoid shoddy work.
Meanwhile, the mayor of Nebbi Municipality, Geoffrey Ngiriker said the current market generates revenue of Shs 12 million monthly, adding the new bigger market will generate more revenue for the council to improve service delivery.
The need for the construction of the central and auxiliary markets in Uganda is premised on the recommendations of the feasibility study commissioned by the government in 2008 to review and assess the infrastructural and operational state of the markets across the country. The findings of the study indicated poorly managed, dilapidated, overcrowded, and overwhelmed market infrastructure.
The Markets and Agricultural Trade Improvement Project [MATIP] was thus initiated with funding from the ADB and the government. In the first phase of MATIP only 7 markets of the 21 markets earmarked have been developed.
MATIP-2 identified 14 markets for development cities and towns of in Entebbe, Masaka, Mbarara, Kabale, Arua, Nebbi, Moroto, Soroti, Tororo, Kampala, Kasese, Busia, Kitgum, and Lugazi.
The primary beneficiaries constitute about 20,000 registered vendors of which more than 60 percent are women.
The overall sector goal of MATIP-2 is to contribute to poverty reduction and economic growth in Uganda through enhanced commercialisation of agricultural produce.
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