The modern markets that were being constructed by the government at a cost of approximately Ksh 1.4 billion within Nairobi County are complete and balloting exercise for the stalls by small scale traders has commenced.
The complete markets are Mwariro in Starehe Constituency constructed at a cost of Ksh 389 million, Westlands at Ksh 214 million, while two markets at Karandini markets in Dagoretti (Ksh 294 million) and Gikomba market as Ksh 492 million is 80 per cent complete.
The Mwariro market has 360 stalls, the six-storey Gikomba Market has 324 stalls, the two-storey Karandini market has 204 stalls, the three-storey Westlands market with 371 stalls has parking on top of the building, while Wakulima market along Kangundo Road has 370 stalls.
Wakulima market was built by the African Development Bank under Social Corporate Responsibility to compensate small scale traders who had been displaced during the construction of the Outering-Kangundo road that was being undertaken by the Kenya Urban Roads Authority.
Speaking at Muguga Green Primary School in Westlands Constituency during the balloting exercise for the Westlands market, the Nairobi County Commissioner Flora Mworoa said the market has 371 stalls of which 335 will be given to the original traders who were operating where the market is constructed, while the extra 36 will be given to those who qualify.
Mworoa said the government is concerned about the plight of small scale traders and will continue to empower and provide them with a conducive working environment for business.
“The balloting has already been done, the exercise being undertaken today is to give the traders the stall numbers,” she added.
Mworoa however, encouraged traders who will not be successful in getting stalls at Westlands market not to despair or feel dejected as they will get spaces in the other markets for trading.
At the same time, the county commissioner urged those who will get stalls in the markets to observe the ministry of Health containment measures during this time of COVID-19 pandemic.
“We are living in different times and you need to strictly observe the COVID-19 protocols such as social distancing, frequent washing of hands with soap and water as well as sanitizing. You should also keep the market environment clean at all times,” added Mworoa.
In his remarks the Director of Social Infrastructure in the State Department of Housing and Urban Development, Mwaura Kibe, traders have already taken application forms for Mwariro market whose deadline was 17th July this year and were only awaiting the Ministry to sort out the issue of allocation of stalls.
The State Department of Housing and Urban Development was funded by the World Bank through the Nairobi Metropolitan Services Improvement Project (NAMSIP) to construct the Karandini and Mwariro markets.
Other markets under NAMSIP that are complete and balloting is on-going include Kikuyu, Juja, Ruiru and Kihara in Kiambu County.