By William Mbangula
About 300 street vendors in front of the Angolan Consulate here would have to vacate the site before month-end.
The Mayor of Oshakati, Katrina Shimbulu, confirmed this in an interview with New Era.
The Angolan Consulate has been complaining about criminal activities, air and noise pollution coming from the site just a stone’s throw from its offices.
They said the presence of an uncontrolled crowd in front of their offices is not compatible with the status of a consulate.
The wrangle between the consulate, Oshakati Municipality and the vendors has been ongoing for more than ten years now.
Shimbulu explained that a decision was taken that by September 30, all vendors should vacate the spot.
A contractor has already been approved and mandated by the local authority to put up a structure at the site that will prevent anyone from conducting any activities in front of the consulate.
The work will start on October 1.
Shimbulu did not indicate where the vendors would be relocated. Some of the vendors spoken to have expressed their unhappiness with the move saying it will deprive them of the opportunity to do business.
Said one of them: “We have no problem to move away from this place, but are we going to a place more strategically located and exposed like this one?
“We are the breadwinners of our families. If our leaders are pushing us out of business like this, how are we going to survive in this country with a high unemployment rate.”
The concerned vendor said they had not been informed formally about the decision to vacate the land but only heard about it over the radio on Monday.