Vendors in Mbare have bemoaned constant interruptions by law enforcement agents which they say is robbing them of business.
This comes after the recent relaxation of business operating hours by government to 1630 hours from the initial 1500 hours over a week ago.
Speaking to this publication, small-market owners operating at undisgnated points in Mbare, Magaba area highlighted that they are spending most of their time dodging law enforcement agents who are regularly impounding their merchandise under the guise of enforcing lockdown restrictions.
“We are having to spend half of the stipulated business hours dodging law enforcement agents regularly impounding our products. They frequently visit saying they are here to enforce social distancing although we know they will only be after briberies and confiscation of our goods,” said Robson Burira.
Nicholas Kashiri echoed the sentiments lamenting the heavy presence of neighbourhood watch on the streets compared to ZRP officers.
“We seem to spend a better part of each day running away from members of the neighbourhood watch. It’s public knowledge that they are not on any salary and from the looks of it they are actually earning a livelihood from confiscation of our products and briberies,” he said.
Another vendor operating in the area said the curfew was a major hindrance to their operations as they have to leave their spots on time to be indoors by 2000 hours.
“The time we are expected to have left our operating spots is when business starts flourishing. However, we have no option but to abide by the dictates,” said Marcelene Chinyani.