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Embu to benefit with six new modern markets

Traders across Embu County are set to benefit from the construction of six new modern markets aimed at stimulating commercial activities and also providing a much-needed ready market for farm produce.

Two markets are already underway, including the ultra-modern Embu Town Market at a cost of around Sh900 million and the Sh20 million Kithimu Market, which is almost complete, while four have been advertised.

The four include Makutano in Mbeere Constituency, Ugweri and Karurumo in Runyenjes Constituency, and Mbuvori in Manyatta.

This is in addition to a proposed industrial park cum aggregation centre to be put up at Machang’a Agricultural Mechanisation (AMS) Centre in Mbeere South Constituency at a cost of Sh500 million in a joint partnership between the county and national government.

The Economic Stimulus Programme (ESP) markets that started in 2007 but stalled are expected to boost economic activities across the county as farmers and traders could capitalise on their hard work and earn a living.

Embu CEC in charge of Lands, Mining, Physical Planning, Housing, and Urban Development, Raymond Kinyua, hailed the development as a good step in reducing poverty and creating employment.

Speaking on Tuesday during a tour of Kithimu Market in Manyatta Constituency, Kinyua said the markets would create enabling business environments for traders, who would now be working in clean and safe environments away from the vagaries of the weather.

He said consultations were ongoing with the State Department of Housing, Urban Development, and Metropolitan Affairs over renovations and design to ensure that the markets are tailor-made for the resident counties.

The CEC expressed satisfaction with the scope of work done at Kithimu Market, which is 90 per cent complete, saying it should be up and running in a couple of weeks.

He said they also planned to make use of the open spaces in the market to put up ICT Hubs for young people to work online, play areas for children, and lactation rooms for breastfeeding mothers.

By Samuel Waititu

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