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Harare Vendors Survive Another Day on City Streets

Thousands of vendors protested in Harare against their removal from city streets

A vendors’ organization said it was business as usual Monday in the Harare central business district despite the expiry last Friday of an ultimatum set by the government for informal traders to leave city streets.

Director Samuel Wadzayi of the National Vendors’ Union Zimbabwe said the only problem they had so far was that of known land barons who allegedly hijacked the vendor registration process and collecting money from informal traders.

The Harare City Council announced last week it would seek help from the police to remove the vendors, though mayor Bernard Manyenyeni said Monday he will only discuss this issue after their Tuesday full council meeting.

But Wadzayi said, “We are not resisting relocation to the new sites. What we want is dialogue and we have communicated this to the authorities.”

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Millions of people have been forced to sell various wares on the streets due to the current harsh econonomic situation in Zimbabwe.