The fire that razed down Mzimba Market in March this year has cost traders K220 million ($488 889) to put up new stalls.
Speaking in an interview on Wednesday, market chairperson Emmanuel Ng’ambi said the structure has 580 stalls costing K450 000 ($1000) each and 189 benches which cost K75 000 ($167) each.
He said the traders constructed the stalls individually as owners, M’mbelwa District Council, said they had no money for the exercise.
Said Ng’ambi: “We launched the [reconstructed] market on July 6 although [some] construction work is still underway.”
Mzimba district commissioner (DC) Thomas Chirwa said although the market is not yet connected to the national electricity grid and has no running water, traders are happy with the development.
He said: “Currently, the market has no flush toilets, but people are using Eco-SAN composting latrines. We might get connected [to water and electricity] today.”
The council projects to collect ground rent and a daily fee of K100 from the traders.
Mzimba Market fire accident is suspected to have been caused by an electrical fault.
About 400 stalls were burnt down and goods worth over K500 million ($1.1 million) were damaged, affecting 632 vendors.