Muscat Municipality cracks down on illegal street vendors

Energy Saturday 21/September/2019 09:27 AM
By: Times News Service
Muscat Municipality cracks down on illegal street vendors

Muscat: Muscat Municipality has cracked down on illegal street vendors in Al Seeb on Friday.

This crackdown culminated in inspections being carried out in multiple areas in the Wilayat, which targeted fruit and vegetable vendors in Al Seeb.

Officials from the municipality had said that illegal street vendors can increase traffic issues, as well as increasing the risk of other violations such as operating in unhygenic locations.

A statement by the Municipality read, "The urban inspection department of Muscat Municipality in Al Seeb has carried out inspection campaigns on street vendors (fruit and vegetable salesmen) in multiple areas in the Wilayat."

Many of the people selling fruit and vegetables on the streets in Al Seeb do not have a permit to do so.

"Between January and August, 2019, there were 47 street vending permits issued for vendors based in Al Seeb," according to a recent municipality statement.

"Inspections on street vendors are done to regulate the sector, but also to protect public health from the potential harm that comes from using unauthorised materials in the products."

Vendors selling their wares without proper authorization can lead to heavier traffic as well as the danger of products spoiling in the sun.

Ahmed Al Harthy, the municipality's support communication section head, said at the end of August: "The municipality to take a stand against unauthorised street vendors and to stop disorganised transactions happening along the road, which can lead to traffic if they spread, and so the inspection teams carry out surpise inspections.

"Furthermore, selling wares outside of stores and under the sun can cause health harms if the temprature rises, making it so that the goods are not suitable for human consumption anymore," he added, adding that negligent storage of the produce can also make this problem worse.

Yahya Al Busaidi, the deputy section head of market regulations in Al Seeb, said that field work is well within the law.

Al Busaidi said: "Monitoring through field work follows municipal order 847/2017, and aims to make sure the vendors have permits and that they follow health standards. The teams also follow through on complaints from people regarding street vendors.

"This leads to discovering unauthorized vendors and vendors who are violating the restrictions, or perhaps selling something that they do not have a license to sell," he added.