Fort Portal: Stinking garbage irks Mpanga Market vendors

FORT PORTAL, January 12, 2024 – Mpanga Market vendors in Fort Portal City are worried about the stinking garbage which they fear could pose health risks to them.

Talking to this reporter, the market vendors blamed the city authorities for failing to remove the garbage that keeps piling daily, attracting houseflies which they say could transmit diseases like cholera and others.

“It’s now three weeks without city authorities collecting this garbage. There is a lot of garbage generated from this market because there are restaurants and other businesses that generate a lot of garbage every day,” Christine Kugonza, a food vendor said.

Kugonza observed that a private company that was awarded a tender to collect the garbage in the market this financial year has failed to do the work.

According to Steven  Sabiiti, the Chairperson Mpanga Market, the city council has not given priority to the market despite earning some revenue from the vendors that operate in the market.

“Every month, the city council gets Shs 70 million as revenue from the but we don’t receive the services we are supposed to receive. The market is grappling with piles of garbage, which is putting people’s health at stake,” Sabiiti said.

Meanwhile, some business proprietors expressed that  garbage dumping sites in Fort Portal City have emerged close to their businesses hindering customer access hence affecting their operations.

Talking to this reporter about the challenge of garbage, Richard Muhumuza the Fort Portal  Central Division mayor attributed resurgence of garbage sites  to city dwellers who dump waste anyhow without minding about the impact.

“Maintaining a clean city is a collective responsibility that rests on each and everyone of us. I urge all community members to actively participate in upholding health standards by not littering or improperly dumping  garbage,” Muhumuza emphasised.

He noted that as Fort Portal  Central Division authorities, they are committed to ensuring garbage collection is managed properly for the cleanliness of the city and the well-being of the people who live and work in the city.

The Shs 11.3 billion Market was constructed by the Government of Uganda. It is one of the modern Markets countrywide that were built under the Markets and Agricultural Trade Improvement Programme [MATIP-1], a Multi-million dollar project supported by the Government and the African Development Bank [AfDB].

The overall goal of building the new markers is to contribute to poverty reduction and economic growth through enhanced commercialization of agricultural produce and other merchandise.

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