The construction of the proposed Safe Border Market (SMART MARKET) for Traders at Soko Posta is ready for commencement after a site handover meeting that took place on Friday.
The two-phased project will cost a total of Sh 53 million. Phase 1 will cost Sh30m and the reamining Sh 22m for Phase 2.
The first phase will include a shade with 160 lockable stalls, kiosks, creche, ablution blocks and associated external works including handwashing spots, solid waste disposal area, parking lot and offloading bay.
The project will take a period of 4 months with Phase 1 of the construction beginning in a fortnight.
"I appeal to the contractor to consider purchase of local material as well as contracting the locals as construction support team. As for our traders please give the contractor ample time to complete the project on time," she said.
The Chief Officer in charge of the Department of Trade Nelson Kwamini urged the traders occupying the site to ensure they are registered before relocating to the renovated Soko Posta Market for easier allocation of stalls.
He urged them to provide maximum cooperation during relocation and warned them against roadside hawking after relocation in the new market.
"Roadside hawking is risky to both traders and motorists, it also affects normal trading activities by attracting crowds. Actions will be taken against individuals trading by the roadside soon after relocation, " he said.
On behalf of partners, TMEAs Simon Konzolo clarified that the funds for completion of Phase 1 are available as he applauded the donors including the European Union, the Embassy of Ireland and others for contributing funds as well as County Government of Busia for donating land for construction of the market.
He said the market once complete will be a relief to displaced traders along the border markets affected by Covid-19 pandemic.
"The market will accommodate enough traders and provide them with conducive trading environment, " he said.
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