Magyezi Institutes Committee to Investigate Wrangles in Kabale Market

The Local Government Minister, Raphael Magyezi has instituted a committee to investigate the mess around the allocation of space to vendors in the newly built Kabale Central market

The Ministry has pitched camp in Kabale municipality to investigate complaints by some vendors against the municipal authorities led by the Mayor, Emmanuel Sentaro Byamigisha, and Prosy Tuhiriirwe, the Assistant Program Officer in Charge of Community Development in the Ministry of Local Government of bungling up the relocation exercise.      

Now, Magyezi says that he has constituted a committee led by the Kabale Resident District Commissioner, the District Internal Security Officer, and an official from the Local Government Ministry to investigate what transpired.

According to Magyezi, the committee will investigate if indeed the authorities received bribes to allocate stalls and lockups to unknown people, civil servants, and their relatives as claimed by disgruntled vendors. He also says that the committee will probe if it is true Byamugisha was leading the allocation team.   

Magyezi says that the committee will carry out the investigations within 10 days and produce a detailed report of their findings. Magyezi says that in case, the allegations against the authorities turn out to be true, the allocation of spaces in the market will be nullified before the ministry takes over the market to repeat the exercise.

A section of vendors led by Julius Turinawe, Cannon Jack Katarishangwa, and Simon Mashemererwa accuse authorities led by Byamugisha of being dictatorial and chasing whoever would protest the mess in the space allocation exercise.    

Byamugisha says that a computer specialist should be added to the investigations committee to be able to review the camera system in the market in order to prove with concrete evidence if he was using dictatorship or not during the allocation of lockups and stalls to the vendors.

On Monday, Magyezi ordered the arrest of Ben Muftimukiza, the Principal town agent for Southern Division in Kabale municipality after vendors accused him of extorting Shillings 10,000 from each of them during registration in 2019. Also wanted is Fidelis Akankwasa, the Kabale Municipality Commercial Officer for allegedly demanding bribes ranging from Shillings 3 million to 5 million to allocate lockups.         

In 2019, the government contracted Chong Chong International Construction (CICO) to upgrade the market at Shillings 23 billion under the World Bank-funded Markets and Agricultural Trade Improvement program – MATIP III. CICO handed over the market to the government in December last year.       

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