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CoJ to give details on the continuation of issuing permits for informal traders

A team from the city’s Economic Development Department took the decision after a large crowd descended on Jorrisen Street in Braamfontein, compromising safety and social distancing regulations.

FILE: Informal traders. Picture: EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - The City of Johannesburg is set to give details soon on the way forward after suspending the issuing of permits for informal traders.

A team from the city’s Economic Development Department took the decision after a large crowd descended on Jorrisen Street in Braamfontein compromising safety and social distancing regulations.

When the lockdown began, the informal traders were barred from trading but recently the regulation was relaxed, and government announced that hawkers should apply for temporary permits.

WATCH: COVID-19 concerns at Pietermaritzburg fresh produce market

There were chaotic scenes at number 66 Jorrisen Street in Braamfontein, with long queues of traders.

Some applicants were coming from as far as Ekhurhuleni, hoping to be issued with temporary permits.

The city of Johannesburg’s Nthatisi Modingoane said: “A huge crowd of informal traders, some of them coming from outside the jurisdiction of the City of Johannesburg, compromising the issue of health and safety, especially when it comes to the issue of social distancing.”

However, those who have been issued with permits said they were thrilled that they would be allowed to operate.

“It was very hard because self-employment is a hand-to-mouth thing,” one hawker said.

Another said: “It is convenient because cupboards were empty, the fridge was empty and we’ve got kids to support and your business of trading on the street is closed.”

The city said those who had been accredited could now sell in their designated areas.

Modingoane said they have assisted half of the traders registered on their database.

For official information about COVID-19 from the Department of Health, please click here.

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