Traders at the Waterloo – Tombo Park Market have blamed the Western Area Rural District Council (WARDC) for the constant invasion and scattering of their goods by the Sierra Leone police.
The Traders Union blamed WARDC saying they lack the infrastructure to provide trading space for the growing traders.
The Chairman, Albert Tarawallie had boasted that their membership contributes largely to the home-sourced revenue Council has been using over the years but the lack the infrastructure to provide trading space for the growing traders’ population in the district. This has led to traders using the sideways of the street to sell their goods
Earlier this week, panic gripped traders along the runway leading to the park which is always crowded by traders. The police van with armed officers pulled over the street and officers started jumping from the vehicle to chase away the traders. A lady, who was on her way to the busy market, nearly lost her life due to a stampede.
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Chairman of WARDC, Kashow Holland-Cole, it could be recalled, had stated that over 80% of the revenue projected to be generated in 2023 has to come from home-sourced revenue including market dues. He said under his administration, markets have been constructed but still facing the issue of street trading.
The media representative for the Waterloo Police Station, ASP Jalloh reiterates that the issue of street trading in the district is alarming.
He said they have seized items and even locked up defaulters but see them there again the next day, he added.
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Stakeholders in the district are calling on the Council and the Police to stand their ground so the traders get into the market instead of trading in the street.
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