SIBU, July 26: Sibu Municipal Council (SMC) will endeavour to make the Sunday market flourish when it begins operation on August 1 at its new site in Taman Indah.
Chairman councillor Clarence Ting said this as some traders had reservation that the new location will not attract the public as they claimed it to be deeply entrenched.
He, however, said that if Taman Indah is found to be unsuccessful, the council would have to find an alternative site to make the Sunday market a feature for years to come.
“Sunday market over 20 years has grown to be an integral part of Sibu where it has become a must-go place for people during their weekend. SMC will ensure this Sunday market will continue to flourish in future,” he assured.
At a recent dialogue between SMC, 70 traders and Bukit Assek and Pelawan assemblymen, Irene Chang and David Wong, a few of the traders were against moving away from the existing site in Taman Mahsuri.
“Their main concern is that they will lose their customers and the new site is also presenting the public with transportation difficulties. They (public) would like somewhere nearer,” said Ting.
The Sunday market has been closed since March 18 when Movement Control Order came into effect.
According to Ting, the relocation of the market was made after much consultation with Nangka assemblyman Dr Annuar Rapaee, Sibu Resident Charles Siaw and the police.
“The dilemma was how to sort out the unlicensed traders. Through their BKSS application, we listed them and seek them out,” he said.
At the dialogue which was conducted in “a peaceful manner”, Ting said he had also explained to the traders that the previous Sunday market venue was not big enough to hold all the traders.
“SMC was hard pressed to locate a suitable site and Taman Indah is an ideal place as it is big enough to house 114 traders,” he said.
This time, the traders will be issued with temporary permit (not amounting to a hawker license).
“All these years these traders have been operating on every Sunday on a first-come-first-serve basis. Due to the limited space, we do not want the traders quarreling over space. This time through their permits, they will be allocated with a fix location,” he said.
On an alternative site if Taman Indah turns out to be a failure, Chang proposed Jalan Tapang, which will be used as a temporary spot for Taman Muhibbah.-DayakDaily