There was relief to Busia Cereal business ventures as a Sh. 38million market constructed by Trademark East Africa (TMEA) was inspected in readiness for use in two weeks’ time by cross border traders.
The first modern cereal market is set to house over 160 traders both from Busia Kenya and Uganda and is 99 per cent complete according to the report by the committee comprising of TMEA, office of County Commissioner Busia led by ACC Adano Duba, Cross border traders and CEC Trade Investment and cooperation Omuse Olekachuna.
“This is the first modern cereal market with the best facilities that will give a new look to the town of Busia. The market is dear and a big relief to traders who have been doing their business on the roads in scorching sun,” noted CEC trader Olekachuna.
The market will be launched at a time when traders had lost their structure constructed along road reserves in efforts to reorganize the town.
Simon Konzolo, the project manager at Trade Mark East Africa-Kenya who has been overseeing the construction of the market applauded the traders for their patience noting that over 300 traders who were displaced will be given first priority in the allocation of stalls at the market.
“The process of allocation of stalls will be free and fair with priority being given to displaced traders who paved the way for the construction of this market,” noted Konzolo.
This is the first phase of the project even as traders seek the county government of Busia to engage other partners to mark Busia a business hub in Africa.
The Chair Lady, Cross Border Women Traders Florence Akinyi said the beneficiaries are the people who were displaced from Kasarani market.
“Over 300 traders were displaced but half will be accommodated now in phase 1, we challenge the county government to expand on the project even as we wait for TMEA additional projects in phase 2,” she emphasized.
This comes after the Ministry of Agriculture, has embarked on massive registration of farmers to increase production of cereals in Busia to boost the country’s food and animal feed security.
Prices for the cereals have soared high in the country in recent days. Some of the products whose cost has gone up include maize, groundnuts, green grams, and rice.
While a 100kg of groundnuts was retailing at Sh15, 500 in November last year, it now cost Sh20, 000.
Likewise, a 2kg tin of green grams at Soko Matope market goes for Sh350 up from Sh250 in January 2022. A 2kg tin of beans has shot from Sh200 to Sh400 in the same period.
The market has child feeding rooms, daycare for young mothers, modern solar for security, a hotel and parking area.
By Absalom Namwalo