23 October, 2020, 12:37 am Central - 21°C Clouds

It is only fair that a household gets one stall – Kumar
Market masters come under scrutiny

It is only fair that a household gets one stall – Kumar

Market masters come under scrutiny

By Dhanjay Deo , Iva Danford
Thursday 24/09/2020
Minister for Local Government, Premila Kumar.

Minister for Local Government, Premila Kumar confirms some market masters have been relieved of their duties and all municipal councils are now under scrutiny.

Kumar says they have found that some market masters have not made correct decisions in a number of municipal councils and some of them have given stalls to people who don't need the stalls and these people have later sublet the stalls.

Kumar says there are people who own 30 stalls, are the biggest distributors of goods, their turnover is running into millions of dollars and are operating from municipal markets.

She says some vendors have stalls in Suva, Nausori and Laqere and the question is why the stalls are in high demand.

Kumar says in some cases, market masters have given the stalls to their family members. She says there were some people who were already in the waiting list and are still waiting to get stalls.

The Minister says it is only fair that a household gets one stall in a municipal market to enable them to make money for their livelihood.

Kumar says they will soon come up with a municipal market regulation after proper consultations are done and details regarding the distribution of stalls will be revealed then.

Kumar says they have to set a benchmark as to who will qualify to get a stall and if the person is earning above an amount, he or she should not be given a stall in the market.

The Minister says municipal councils are giving stalls for less amount and there are other middle men who take the stalls, sublet and make more money.

Kumar says markets are not for big players.

Kumar says this is why the CEOs of all municipal councils will now be deciding who will be getting the stalls in the municipal markets and this is to curb unfair practices.

The Minister for Local Government adds they will also change the description of the roles of market masters to market managers where they will be responsible for the total management of the market which includes resolving conflicts, collection of fees and cleanliness of the market.

Meanwhile, the Assistant Secretary and Legal Advisor of the Suva United Market Vendors Association, Shobhna Verma says they welcome the move where the CEO of the municipal councils will now be making decisions regarding stalls as no new vendors are getting stalls while some current vendors have 20 to 30 stalls.

The Suva United Market Vendors Association has 350 members. There are 500 permanent stalls in Suva market and over 1,000 temporary stalls.

Verma says the Local Government Minister is correct that stalls should be given to people who are in dire need of money for their livelihoods.

Stay tuned for the latest news on our radio stations

CFL radio frequencies
Autumn Nations Cup
Fiji Rugby CEO John O’Connor has highlighted that they have been asking for Fiji to have test matches against Tier One Nations and the inclusion of ...
2 days ago

Online Safety Commission
Majority of the complaints received by the Online Safety Commission last year dealt with defamatory ...
2 days ago

Rape trial of pastor Waisake Tulavu
Coverage of rape trial of Agape pastor Waisake Tulavu
16 days ago
Complaint filed against a teacher allegedly behind repeated fb posts to humiliate Qereqeretabua with references to porn and immorality
Minister for Education, Rosy Akbar has received a complaint by the National Federation Party Youth General Secretary that a teacher in Suva is alleged...
7 hours ago
Children in tourist areas are vulnerable to physical, emotional and sexual abuse - Koya
Minister for Tourism, Faiyaz Koya is calling on stakeholders in the tourism industry to extend the duty of care to our children, especially those in ...
8 hours ago

Two in custody for allegedly robbing a student in Samabula
Two men who allegedly threatened and robbed a female student in Samabula on Tuesday have been charged. The two have been charged with one count ...
9 hours ago

23 people have died so far from leptospirosis, dengue fever and typhoid
18 people have lost their lives due to leptospirosis, three have died from dengue fever while two people have died due to typhoid since January this ...
10 hours ago

Vodafone gives $5,000 each to 10 lucky winners
Vodafone has given away $50,000 to 10 lucky winners through their Fiji Day Fiji50 promotion. Each winner received $5,000 as they had text Fiji50 ...
11 hours ago

Ali shares her personal story dealing with domestic violence
Fiji Women’s Crisis Centre Coordinator Shamima Ali today shared her personal experience about domestic violence in her life as she spoke to Bank ...
11 hours ago