Mixed reactions to governor’s 24-hour retail markets

Monday, October 3rd, 2022 03:00 | By
Positive progress made on port revival, says governor
Mombasa Governor Abdulswamad Nassir. PHOTO/Courtesy

Traders at Mombasa’s largest market, Kongowea, have expressed mixed feelings about Governor Abdulswamad Nassir’s proposal for a 24-hour economy.

Speaking recently, the governor outlined various policies for economic revival of the Port county.

While a number of traders said the move could create business opportunities for many jobless youth, others were concerned that it could attract more muggers and worsen insecurity.

“Do you know what a 24-hour economy means? It means that more people will get the opportunity to trade at the market. While I work during the day shift, another will get the opportunity to trade in the night shift.

There are people who find it difficult and inconvenient to come to the market during day time. Now they will get a chance to do  at night. Money will circulate well,” said Eunice Ondiek, a trader at market’s onion section.

Address insecurity

But other traders said it would be difficult to achieve the intended goal if insecurity is not addressed.

They said the governor should have convened a meeting with them to look into the security situation  in and outside the market.”

“As we talk now, there are drug peddlers who have found a home here. Also, there are muggers armed with daggers. The county government should think of how to eliminate these thugs,” said Elijah Kailikya, a trader at the vegetables section. The traders the governor should involve them in identifying key hindrances that  could derail a 24-hour economy.

“Probably the governor is unaware that there are thieves in the market, ” explained Patrick Zani, who sells pineapples.

Governor Nassir has targeted Kongowea and Marikiti markets in the town’s economic revolution.

He said: “Our people must be able to trade and go about their business at any time of the day. Through the Shariff Nassir Foundation, we installed CCTv cameras in Marikiti Market. We have done the same in Kongowea and we will continue to support traders through such efforts."

“I am committed to promoting a 24 hour economy in Mombasa and will work towards restoring security by installing solar-powered security lighting and CCTV cameras operated from a command centre, he said.

On Thursday, the governor met Kenya Power officials, led by acting managing director Geoffrey Muli.

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