Council hits at traders

THE eThekwini municipality has hit back at traders who claimed that they will not make any money when tourists flock to Durban for the World Cup.

Last week the street traders demanded that South African host cities should work with the local vendors' organisations during the Fifa games.

According to Fifa, trading will not be permitted in exclusion zones around the stadiums on match days.

In addition Fifa has warned against ambush marketing within the precinct of all 2010 host stadiums and fan parks.

Informal trading manager in the eThekwini municipality Thulani Nzama insisted that they have already successfully implemented a plan to help street traders benefit from the World Cup.

Nzama said the city had "capacitated the street traders by providing soft skills in preparation for the World Cup".

"Street vendors have been trained in foreign languages to be able to communicate with visitors," he said.

"They have also been given food-handling skills and we have even designed a website for rickshaw operators and their carts have been upgraded."

Nzama said the city had conducted a series of workshops around ambush marketing.

He said the trader's claims were "incorrect" and that the purpose of the workshops run by the city was "to instill optimism".

Nzama said the role of the city was to provide the infrastructure within which economic development can occur.

"In all of the city's projects there is an investment in training and the development of SMMEs and informal traders." - Corrinne Louw