ADMINISTRATORS of Auki market in Malaita have increased the vendor user fee of $5 to $10 this year.
Market manager Betty Kwanairara confirmed the fee increase to the Solomon Star.
She said the increase was necessary to allow them maintain the standard of the market this year.
“The increase in fee will also enable us to purchase basic items such as receipt books and electricity to the market,” Ms Kwanairara said.
She explained the market used to be run by Malaita Chazon Development Authority (MCDA).
Now, the management was shifted back to Malaita Development Authority so the provincial executive thought it fit to increase the fees this year.
Market vendors spoken to disagreed with the increase fee.
They claimed Auki market cannot be compared to Honiara where vendors’ taking on a day is much higher.
They also claimed the market has been without water supply and electricity for the last four years.
Auki market building was part of the multi-million dollar project funded by the Japanese Government.
It opened four years ago.
Part of the project was the new Auki jetty, which can accommodate up to four ships at a time.
By WILLIAM EKOTANI