Chinhoyi Municipality to stop demolishing vending stalls and repair a
shade which was damaged by its employees as they pulled down
structures owned by some informal traders.Justice Manzunzu granted the order to stop the demolition of any
vending stalls and property belonging to small and medium enterprises
as well as informal vendors at Gadzema Flea Market in Chinhoyi after
some informal traders represented by Kudzai Choga and Obey Shava of
Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights filed an urgent chamber application
on 6 May 2020 seeking an order to stop the local authority from
demolishing their vending stalls and wares.
In the application, the informal traders, who include Tafadzwa Marimo,
Emmanuel Ngwaru, Richard Svosve, Pepukayi Marega and Devis Shopo, who
operate from Gadzema Flea Market in Chinhoyi in Mashonaland West
province and have been paying fees and levies to the local authority,
argued that the demolition of their vending stalls amounts to
compulsory deprivation of property in violation of the fundamental
rights to property enshrined in section 71 of the Constitution.
Justice Manzunzu also ordered Chinhoyi Municipality to renovate Shade
Number Two at Gadzema Flea Market, which had been damaged by some
municipal police officers who had pulled it down last week.
The Judge stated that in the event that Chinhoyi Municipality wished
to carry out renovations of some vending stalls at Gadzema Flea
Market, it should comply with the provisions of section 32 of the
Regional, Town and Country Planning Act as read with section 199(2)(c)
of the Urban Councils Act. The provisions require proper notice of any
proposed demolition of illegal structure to be given to the owner of
such a structure and for an appeal against the notice to be filed with
the Administrative Court within 28 days, during which period no action
may be taken on the basis of the notice until the appeal is either
determined or abandoned.