Plot Owners Urged To Pay Fees Or Risk Losing Market Space

This article was last updated on May 25, 2022

The State Technical Steering Committee Chairperson, Mr. Alfred Kayumba Tugul who is also the state Director General for the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning said that after the tedious exercise of screening, which began on 29 January, more than 2,000 applicants applied for plots through a lottery technique but a section of the applicants have so far become reluctant to settle payments.

Mr. Kayumbas disclosed that his committee is now threatening applicants that they will lose the plots if they fail to pay the fee of about 800 South Sudanese Pounds each in seven days.

Those who will not comply with this timeline will lose their individual plots as prescribed by law and unpaid plots shall be withdrawn from and be re-allocated to any interested business people.

In January, the State Steering Committee led by the Committee Secretary, Mr. Jeffrey Von Otto conducted completion of final screening of applicants aspiring to acquiring commercial plots at Torit Model Market.

More than 2,000 applicants applied for plots and struggled through a lottery technique.

The applicants were categorized into those with existing businesses but owning lands or plots where they have operated from the old Omoliha Market in Torit, those with existing businesses but operating in rental buildings at the old Omoliha Market in Torit, and the potential traders who have newly expressed interests to establish commercial centres to running businesses.

The applicants were competing for over 810 surveyed plots at Torit Model Market.

The Committee established that 353 traders both with existing businesses but owning lands or plots where they have been operating and those with existing Businesses but operating in rental buildings at the old Omoliha Market in Torit were considered a priority without any condition given to them because they wanted to encourage local business people to continue with the business ventures.
The market was constructed by the Norwegian Church Aid (NCA), through the UN Development Programme (UNDP), with support from South Sudan Recovery Fund (SSRF) through donation from a Multi-Donor Trust Fund, and was officially opened in November 2011.

The governments of the United Kingdom, the Netherlands and Norway have provided contributions to the SSRF.

The new market serves as a “model” for constructing marketplaces, with set infrastructure standards.

The market is equipped with separate blocks for vegetables, fish and meat, and has accessible storage facilities for surplus goods.

It is enclosed in concrete perimeter fence; the market has its own elevated water tank, a borehole and a pump, as well as separate blocks for wash areas and toilets.

The model market and the road equipment were part of a US$ 2.6 million livelihoods project intended to address the lack of market infrastructure, increase crop productivity and facilitate commercial development in Eastern Equatoria.
In November 2012, the Nyong Community members from Torit County in Eastern Equatoria state, differed with the State Committee over Market Management and moved to petition the state government steering committee to hand over the management of Torit Model Market to Nyong Payam.

The community had urged the steering committee to immediately handover the power to allocate the market to their Payam management.

They claimed that the market belongs to Torit County but not the state government as stipulated in Local Government Act 2009, therefore should not be administered by the state authorities.

The governor in response said that the state government will not reverse its decision on Torit Modern Market because the market was constructed using Sudan Recovery Funds channelled through Norwegian Church Aid (NCA) and the market is benefitting all the residents from different counties.

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