Municipality loses Shs365m in market dues - official

The Minister of Local Government Mr Raphael Magyezi tours the newly constructed Kabale central market on Monday. PHOTO | ROBERT MUHEREZA.

What you need to know:

  • According to the guidelines from the Local Government ministry, each vendor operating a lockup shop is supposed to pay between Shs100,000 and Shs150,000, depending on the shop location.

Kabale Municipality has lost about Shs365m that was expected to be collected from the newly constructed central market.

This was revealed by the Kabale Municipal Council Mayor, Mr Sentaro Byamugisha, while addressing the press at his office on Tuesday. He blamed some Ministry of Local Government officials, who he said stopped the signing a tenancy agreement between the municipality and the Kabale Central Market traders and vendors. This was in April, shortly after the expiry of the grace period of three months from the time the contractor handed over the market.

“We had planned to collect Shs855m per financial year as market dues from Kabale Central Market but this has not been achieved because about Shs365m has already been lost. The monthly dues from each vendor have not been collected for the last five months. This is because some officials from the Ministry of Local Government stopped the exercise of signing a tenancy agreement that was aimed at streamlining the payment process,” Mr Byamugisha said.

According to the guidelines from the Local Government ministry, each vendor operating a lockup shop is supposed to pay between Shs100,000 and Shs150,000, depending on the shop location.

Mr Byamugisha added that the recovery process of the lost money shall be done after the current conflict between the line ministry and Kabale Central Market is resolved.

The construction of Kabale Central Market started in December 2019 after the government secured a loan of Shs23.76b from the African Development Bank-funded Markets and Agricultural Trade Improvements Project (MATIP).

The construction process was completed in November 2022. Allocation of workspace for the vendors in the new market then started and was completed in January. The traders and vendors were then given a grace period of three months from January to March 31, before the vendors could start paying market dues to Kabale Municipal Council.

In mid-July, the Local Government minister, Mr Raphael Magyezi, stopped the registration exercise of all vendors operating in Kabale Central Market. He promised to repeat the exercise of allocating lockup shops and stalls after a section of traders and vendors, led by Rev Jack Katarishangwa, claimed that the exercise was “not fair and transparent”.

However, the chairman of Kabale Central Market Vendors Association, Mr Joshua Mutekanga, on Tuesday said repeating the allocation exercise will attract legal issues against the Minister of Local Government because the first allocation of lockup shops and stalls was conducted by the officials from the same ministry and the beneficiaries are not complaining.

“Last month, about 500 traders operating in Kabale Central Market issued a notice to the leadership of their association and the authorities of Kabale Municipality stating that they properly resettled in the new market and any plan to remove them to pave way for a fresh reallocation exercise shall require a court order,  not mere directives from the minister,” Mr Mutekanga said.


The new Kabale Central Market is composed of 494 lockup shops, 20 bulk stores, 385 stalls, 76 matooke pitches, 20 fish shops, 10 chicken cages, 12 kitchen cooking units, 30 toilets, 12 bathrooms, 10 urinals, CCTV cameras, a police station, public address system, piped water and electricity connection.

It also has a parking yard measuring 4,580 square metres and firefighting equipment, among others. It has capacity of accommodating 1,090 vendors.