DURBAN’S INFORMAL TRADERS IMBIZO ATTRACTS BIG CROWD
By: Winston Sibanda
Informal traders came in large numbers to sign the “Keep My City Clean” pledge at the annual Imbizo which was held at the Curries Fountain Stadium on Wednesday.
This followed the launch of the Keep My City Clean campaign which took place in March this year. Imbizo was aimed at addressing challenges faced by informal traders regarding the state of the city. The pledge which was signed was to cement commitment to cleaning the city.
According to Emmanuel Nzuza who is Durban’s regional manager of the campaign, in a bid to ensure the campaign becomes a success, the municipality has divided the city into six sections. They have introduced promotions to encourage people to participate. They will also conduct random inspections and the cleanest sections will be awarded. He stated that their campaign does not only target physical cleanliness.
“When we are saying Clean My City we are talking about more than hygiene. We want to clean crime, poverty and drugs out of our streets and create a conducive environment for everyone,” said Nzuza.
EThekwini mayor, James Nxumalo, told the traders that the Municipality has set aside R101 million budget to develop vending stalls and build toilets for the public. He assured the traders that the municipality was aware of their challenges and that they have urged the metro police not to harass informal traders. He added that the leadership of the city understands the role played by the traders in the economy.
Nxumalo said, “As the leadership of the city we want to show them that we care as this is a very crucial wider regional economy, providing thousand s of jobs the formal sector is not able to fill.”
Jabulani Zwane acknowledged the municipality for introducing this campaign in communities.
“It is impressive to see the youths waking up in the morning, cleaning after them rather than going to shebeens. Our communities are habitable now even TB cases are reducing,” said Zwane.
At the end of this year’s Imbizo, the mayor officially signed the Clean My City pledge. Councillors who were present also signed before it was given to traders and other stakeholders who represent the traders to sign.
The event ended on a high note with lots of food and drinks served for refreshments.