Chisokone market to be demolished, claims UPND

By Staff Reporter

 

Opposition United Party for National Development (UPND) says the government’s planned demolition of Chisokone market in Kitwe to build a shopping mall will cripple people’s income.

Party vice president Geoffrey Mwamba said it had become a habit for the Patriotic Front to punish the poor after using them in elections.

Mwamba said the tendency was not only evil but it was a serious demonstration government’s disregard for the poor.

“Edgar Lungu should not demolish Chisokone market because he will plunge the more than 20, 000 traders and their families into abject poverty and hunger,” he said. “There is need to learn from Luburma market in Kamwala where the market was demolished in the name of improving infrastructure, yet the premises were later leased to foreigners leaving Zambians with no place of their own to conduct businesses.”

He said most of the traders in the existing malls were already suffering while some had relocated because they could not afford to pay rentals to the new owners.

“Information reaching us is that Chisokone market will be demolished and no trader will be compensated yet it will take three years to develop the new market. Edgar should immediately stop it,” said Mwamba.

“As UPND, we challenge Edgar Lungu and his government to compensate the traders before taking such a step. It is important that PF shows the Zambians where they got the funds so that we avoid a situation where they use borrowed funds and later lease the market to private owners who will in turn charge high rentals to traders.”