Govt to compensate over 3,000 Ndola market inferno victims

Government has begun registering traders affected by the inferno that gutted over 3,000 shops at Kapalala Market in Ndola, to pave way for compensation.

According to a statement issued by Ndola City Council public relations manager Tilyenji Mwanza yesterday, the information captured would help ascertain the losses incurred by traders.

“The road map for the reconstruction of Kapalala market which got burnt down on August 30th, 2017 has been put in place. Announcing the Development Copperbelt Province Permanent Secretary Elias Kamanga said the rebuilding of the Kapalala market will be supervised and headed by Honor the Vice-President of Zambia Inonge Wina under the ‘Build Back Market’ campaign. Mr Kamanga who inspected the charred site and later addressed affected traders at Masala Secondary School told the marketeers that the registration process to capture the demographics of the victims would commence tomorrow,” Mwanza stated.

“Mr Kamanga who was in the company of Ndola City Council Town Clerk Mr Wisdom Bwalya, Ndola District Commissioner Geoffrey Chisulo, the Disaster Management and Mitigation Unit team as well as Ndola City Council planners said authorities were taking immediate action observing that President Edgar Chagwa Lungu wanted to have the new market reconstructed with immediate effect. The demographic registration compilation has been structured to ensure that the previous traders are not pushed out of the new market by chancers or swindlers. Additionally, the information captured will be used to know the losses incurred and pave way for compensations. The new market is poised to be resilient as well as larger to capture a total of about 5,000 traders owing to the increasing population of Zambia. Flattening of the grounds for the reconstruction of the market has already begun and excavators are on site whilst fire tenders are still on site trying to cool the ground.”

She stated that the traders would be moved to Mushili grounds in the meantime.

“Meanwhile, Ndola City Council has identified Mushili grounds as the temporal resettlement for the traders. The Council has advised traders who had started personal reconstructions at the Kapalala market to desist reconstructions using planks popularly known as ‘makopa’ noting that the place was currently inhabitable as it is disaster prone. The Local Authority has also noted that they will like to put in place a modern facility taking into consideration risk management.

Ndola City Council Town Clerk Mr Bwalya says a proposal to use fire resistant materials has also been proposed as well as other risk factors considered. Mr Bwalya has urged traders to temporarily use the relocated area which is being built by Zambia National Service and allow the professionals to reconstruct a proper resilient modern,” stated Mwanza.

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