File picture: Timothy Bernard

Johannesburg - The Johannesburg city council has rejected an attempt by the mayoral committee to prohibit street trading in the city centre, a trader organisation said on Thursday.

“We thank all Johannesburg city councillors for rejecting an idea that was not the product of an all-inclusive engagement process,” the SA National Traders' Retail Alliance (Santra) said.

Spokesman Edmund Elias said the rejection of the motion was the result of pressure from Santra and its support team.

The city rejected the motion at a monthly council meeting on Wednesday.

Elias said all political parties united in rejecting the proposal.

He said informal trading management was in a state of collapse.

“Only an all inclusive engagement process that includes the city, big business and trader leadership will resolve a worsening situation.”

Last year, the city removed more than 6000 traders from streets in the central business district in a bid to have them registered.

The Constitutional Court ruled in December that the traders could return to their pavement spots. The city was ordered, at the time, to not to interfere with informal traders operating on the streets, and to pay the costs of the application.

Comment from the city could not immediately be obtained.