Harare businesses and pedestrians have been complaining bitterly over street vendors hawking music at high volume and finally Harare City Council has now moved to thwart the practice.
Areas notorious for this noise-making trend include the First Street Mall, Robert Mugabe Road and Copacabana.
In an interview, Harare City Council acting corporate communications manager Mr Innocent Ruwende said they will take appropriate action to bring normalcy to the CBD.
“Anyone caught on the wrong side of the law will face the full wrath of the law. According to (regulations) no person shall operate or cause or permit to be operated any wireless, loudspeaker, gramophone, record -player, amplifier, musical instrument or similar device so as to disturb or interfere with the rest, peace or tranquillity of any occupier of premises in the neighbourhood or in any public street,” he said. Mr Ruwende said council had joined forces with the police and anyone caught on the wrong side will be arrested.
“Council has always been carrying operations with the ZRP to arrest such people but they always resurface. The economic environment currently obtaining is making some of them incorrigible,” he said.
However, some music vendors who spoke on condition of anonymity said they have resorted to selling music on the streets as a survival strategy and pleaded with the city fathers and Government to address the issue in fair manner.
“In some countries it is known as street music tourism, which if done correctly can boost the tourism and arts sectors. We know to some it is noise but that is where our money is. We kindly ask the responsible authority to be lenient with us,” said one music vendor.