‘Go &Sell Your Merchandise In Designated Markets’- Transport Minister Katumba Wamala Orders All Roadside Vendors To Vacate Streets With Immediate Effect

‘Go &Sell Your Merchandise In Designated Markets’- Transport Minister Katumba Wamala Orders All Roadside Vendors To Vacate Streets With Immediate Effect

By Spy Uganda

Kampala: The Minister of Works and Transport, Gen. Edward Katumba Wamala has ordered authorities to immediately remove all roadside vendors around Cities and urban centers in a move to address urban congestion and prioritize public safety.

Gen. Katumba made the announcement at Uganda Media Center on Friday noting that the directive aims to enhance the functionality of the city and prioritize the well-being of its citizens by reclaiming public spaces.

Gen Katumba emphasized that engaging in trading on the road reserve and walkway is illegal, as stipulated by the Road Safety Act passed by Parliament in 2019.


Section 65(1)[e] of the Roads Act, 2019, the act explicitly states that a person conducting a business activity on the shoulder, sidewalk, or road reserve of a public road commits an offense. Upon conviction, they are liable to a fine not exceeding one hundred sixty-eight currency points, imprisonment not exceeding seven years, or both.

“Why aren’t people encouraged to trade in designated areas? Such practices often result in interference with the movement of vehicles and pedestrians, encroachment on the road carriageway leading to heightened instances of vehicle conflicts, unnecessary traffic jams due to vehicles slowing down, and clogging of drains owing to inadequate waste management in road sections with trading activities,” he expressed.


“I have already issued a circular to all road agencies, including KCCA, UNRA, and Local Government, instructing them to enforce this existing law. Ugandans often say that laws are in place but are not followed. However, in this instance, strict adherence is crucial. We insist that traders vacate walkways promptly, ceasing the practice of placing their merchandise on drainage channels.” he added.

He pointed out that a significant portion of the waste generated by traders ultimately finds its way into the drainage channels, leading to channel breakages. This, in turn, results in water flowing onto the roads, consequently diminishing the lifespan of the road infrastructure.

“All enforcement officers are hereby instructed to dismantle all platforms erected on walkways and drainage channels. This directive extends beyond Kampala; it applies to all trading centers nationwide. Everyone must understand that engaging in roadside trading is deemed illegal,” declared the Minister.


Regarding the plight of the affected individuals, Gen Katumba emphasized that it is incumbent upon local governments to furnish designated areas where local hawkers and vendors can carry out their business activities.

“I have heard concerns from individuals expressing that the government’s actions are forcing them out of their roadside businesses, resulting in unemployment. The critical question arises: where should these people relocate? This, in essence, falls under the purview of local government responsibility. The local government must allocate suitable spaces for traders who have traditionally operated along the roadside. The promotion of organized commerce necessitates that trading activities be conducted in designated areas such as markets, as we cannot afford to have goods like cabbages being sold on the roadside,” remarked the speaker.

As stakeholders adapt to these changes, it is anticipated that the minister’s initiative will contribute to harmonious coexistence between urban development and thriving businesses, ultimately creating a more vibrant and orderly city.

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