Hundreds of traders from Githurai in Ruiru, Kiambu County today stormed the newly built modern market for allocation after information went round that a scheme had been hatched to deny a section of them space.
According to them, five traders representing a segment of the entire market have been planning to demarcate the 1,200 available stalls denying over 5,000 more traders space to sell their wares.
Led by Joseph Wanyoike, the chairman of Githurai main market, the traders claimed that former Prime Minister Raila Odinga was set to tour the market tomorrow (Wednesday) to apportion the complete stalls to a section of traders leaving others without anywhere to sell their products.
They said that the five traders representing the Migingo section within the main market had forwarded a list of their favorite vendors to Odinga and whom they said are set to benefit with the available stalls.
Wanyoike said that they will not allow apportionment of the market stalls in total disregard of their elected leaders and whom they said have not been informed about Odinga’s visit or the proposed distribution of available stalls.
Speaking after demonstrating outside the newly completed block, the traders vowed to paralyze any bid to deny them a chance to operate at the market.
They took issue with Odinga for going behind their leaders back to launch a project that was promised and delivered by the Jubilee Government under the stewardship of President Uhuru Kenyatta and his deputy William Ruto.
Addressing the furious vendors, Kiu and Mwiki ward members of county assembly James Kimani and Daniel Ngugi respectively said that they have not been informed of Odinga’s visit and that any effort to launch the market without their knowhow amounted to belittling them.
While insisting that they were not fighting developments, the MCAs called on leaders to avoid politicizing operations of the market or demeaning them.
On his side, Ngugi said that any visit by a national government or high ranking leader at Githurai market must follow protocol and elected leaders must be informed for better mobilization and provision of security.
Construction of the ultramodern, multimillion market has been marked as a fulfillment of a long-waited promise by the Head of State, a promise he made during 2017 election campaigns.
Kiambu County government injected Sh 300 million while the national government contributed Sh 200 million for the project.