Blantyre City Council moves to end illegal vending


Blantyre City Council (BCC) has started relocating vendors, who ply their trade in undesignated places, to designated markets in the commercial city.

A team of BCC delegates, led by the city’s deputy mayor, Joseph Makwinja, commenced the exercise in consultation with the vendors association.

“We are departing from using force when relocating the vendors. There is no police officer here and we are engaging them [the vendors] in dialogue so that the vendors appreciate the importance of plying their business in designated places,” he said.


Makwinja said the use of force results in the vendors returning to the streets after being moved because they lack appreciation for the importance of the exercise.

He said the council would not relent in its drive to end illegal vending in the city.

“We will be monitoring the situation. If the vendors force their colleagues who are joining them out, we will step in and force them to accommodate them,” Makwinja said.


During the exercise, BCC allocated space to some of the relocated vendors while others only had their names listed to be allocated the space.

Most of the relocated vendors complained of shortage of space in the market places.

The relocated vendors also faced resistance from their counterparts who operate in the designated places.

One of the vendors who plies her trade at Nandos in Blantyre, Abiti Patuma said there was no better place for her to conduct her business other than along the streets.

“We operate from here until 7 of 8 O’clock at night. This cannot happen if we are to move to the marketplace they [BCC] want us to go,” she said

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