City Hall ordered to remove more vendors from outside business places

City Hall ordered to remove more vendors from outside business places

The Georgetown Mayor and City Council is now grappling to find short, medium, and long term solutions, as more businesses have secured Court orders for the removal of vendors from around their premises. 

Earlier this month, the City’s Town Clerk (ag), Candace Nelson ordered the immediate removal of all vendors operating in the vicinity of Demico House, Stabroek and The Discount Store on Regent Street, in keeping with the orders of the High Court. 

 According to the notice, the vendors are required to remove all pallets, trays, tables, mannequins, barrels, boxes, and other encumbrances from the pavements and streets lining those businesses. The order to move is in accordance with Section 10 of the City Government By-Laws, enacted under the Municipal and District Councils Act. 

Today, vendors plying their trade on the outskirts of The Discount Store told News Source that they have no place to go, as they registered their frustration. 

A 68-year-old vendor said he has been selling in the area for more than 30 years, and it is unfair to ask him to leave now. 

“I deh here selling before he buy this place, this same spot. I go America and come back and sell right here, and now he want move me. Is bread they want throw we out of. Is not he alone, everybody doing it. All of them with their big money, duh is what dem doing,” the 68-year-old vendor said. 

Another vendor, who sells food in the same vicinity, said her eight employees are at risk of losing their jobs due to the move by the Municipality and Discount Store to have them removed. 

“It will affect everybody because I have people working for me, I have people depending on me for a lil salary. So, it will affect everybody. I have staff, I have like eight staff depending on me, so it will affect everybody but I ain’t moving, I will sell in my car,” the food vendor said. 

An elderly woman who also vends in the area, said she has been operating her business in the area for more than 40 years, and has no where else to go. 

“This is 40 years I selling here, since in button store, when he come and buy it. The first thing he come and throw a whole truck load sand a still deh here. He is a wicked man. He used to keep sweet with people, and since he buy the button place, he throw a truck load of sand, and is since then, but I am not moving because I am a pensioner,” she said. 

In an interview, City Mayor Alfred Mentore said the Council is cognizant of the issues facing both the vendors and the proprietors of the businesses. He said the Council will explore short-, medium- and long-term solutions at its next meeting. He said there is the possibility of expanding the Stabroek Market to accommodate those who are likely to be displaced due to the recent court actions. 

Mayor Alfred Mentore

“I have been working with those persons to find a solution as it relates to Stabroek Market, and how we will be able to extend Stabroek Market upwards. I am also looking at ways in which we can deal with the vendors arcade mall in front of GBTI Bank as well as Republic Bank, where we are looking to raise the profile of that building to create more vending, as well as the Bourda Market,” the City Mayor said.

However, he said such long-term solutions require funding. 

“Any plan of this nature would need funding as well, so we are talking with Central Government to see when we put together the project proposal, how we will be able to get financing from them. But we are also looking at our own financial model to generate revenue with the help of other funding agencies, and people who have grant funding. But we want to take the people off the streets and redirect the traffic back to the markets,” he said. 

The Mayor said a short-term solution will be discussed when the Council meets next week. He explained that the Orders issued by the Court mandates the Town Clerk to act, and there is not much the Council can do with regards to the removal of the vendors, since the businesses have secured the Court Orders.

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