Honiara City Council has suspended sale of non-essential goods at the Honiara’s main central market.

Non-essential goods include clothes, jewellery and accessories and the popular assorted range of coconut oil.

The suspension is to ensure Honiara Central Market adhere to the measures put in place under the ‘state of public emergency’.

Central Market Master Nelson Sakui said the short notice was unexpected for the vendors and there were mixed reactions when the announcement was made.

Sakui said HCC made this decision to minimize the health risks of people and vendors since central market is the only market sustaining the whole city.

“With the risk of isolation and spacing the authority is looking at the point of controlling everyone in the market whilst the Central Market is the only market here in Honiara.

“We faced a lot of disagreements, but we have to do what we have to do now at the point we are looking at measures to control the Market.”

President of Honiara Central Market Vendors Association (HCMVA) Moreen Sarika said most vendors are bread winners in their families. She said and because of this, they are very sensitive to the vendors’ feelings when they approach them with the news of suspension.

“We understand the challenge the vendors are going through, but we approach them in a way that they can understand. The fact of the matter is that the suspension is temporary.

“HCMVA also try as much to find ways to help them to at least continue with their marketing because most of them depending on market as the main source to generate income for their families.”

In the meantime, Honiara Central market only has vendors with essential goods selling their produce at the market.

The decision of suspension came about as Honiara City Council is working on plans to address the issue of social distance.

This shall depend on the current situation of Covid-19.