Council does not maintain these toilets to an unacceptable standards
Vendors at Chitima market are living in fear of cholera and other diseases due to the filthy toilets that often get blocked without remedial action being taken.
Traders at the market claim Masvingo City Council has not cleaned the toilets at Chitima market for several weeks and blockages have not been attended to.
People who are being affected the most are those who sell fruits and vegetables as well as those who prepare meals.
Sarah Muziyoni, who has been doing business at the market for many years, said customers were shunning the place due to extremely bad odours.
“Most affected is the food section. People are thinking twice before coming here to buy meals, fruits and vegetable. This is very bad for us and we feel council has neglected its responsibilities.
The informal traders also fear for their health and the safety of their minor children who do not know how to practice absolute caution in a dirty environment.
A customer who used to buy lunch at the market said she had since stopped due to the increase of flies and uncleanliness.
Other traders said they were contemplating taking their demands to council in a forceful manner most probably trough a demonstration against the environmental health services department.
Acting director in the department, Ngonidzase Mapamula, however, disputed that the toilets were not being cleaned, saying there were employees dedicated to that job alone.
“The toilets are being cleaned every day. We have permanent cleaners who stay at Chitima. There was just a blockage which was attended to last week,” said Mapamula.
Housing and Community Services director, Livison Nzvura said council was doing its best to keep the market clean despite that many of the traders were not paying anything to council.
“Council is not getting anything much from that market because people are not paying, yet we are still doing our best to keep the place clean. We encourage people to quickly notify us if there if they face such kind of challenges in the future,” said Nzura.