A certain celebrity DJ told me one day that a ‘mzungu’ event organizer wanted to have a function at a certain nightspot one time. He went to view the spot in the company of this DJ and among the many questions he asked was, ‘where is your fire escape?’
The manager of the nightspot answered ‘ati (what)?’
The manager of the venue was bewildered and so was the DJ, when the ‘mzungu’ organizer decided to rule out the venue because of the lack of a fire escape. It was non-negotiable.
I’m not saying that a Kenyan can’t do that, it’s just that in this story it happened to be a mzungu.
I was impressed. Lawsuits aside, I felt like this guy was taking someone’s money in the name of entertainment, and wanted to ensure they’re safe as well – in the event of a fire.
My bone of contention is not only fire, but petty crime and the general protection from it.
There are several places in town where night or day revellers are warned to not answer the phone outside the venue, clutch their handbags or man-bags carefully and make sure they tip the watchmen so that their cars are taken care of and not broken into.
Is it just me or is there something wrong with that picture.
To make things worse, since nothing is being done about it, the situation is beginning to get out of hand. Incidents where people are being mugged and robbed around nightspots are becoming more and more common and a bit more violent.
And the examples are countless! Just the other day on electric avenue, a friend of mine was surrounded by about five man-boys, robbed of money and his phone and hit on the face with a knife while going from one venue to another, a mere 20 metres apart. I don’t believe that that was the only incident that night.
It’s not right. I have not been exempt of such attacks, and lucky for me, I wasn’t hurt. But even though, I am wary of going to those places because I am not certain of my safety.
That should not be the case. There ought to be a certain responsibility that these establishments and event organisers adopt that ensure their patronage are secure.
Let there be a code of conduct or set policy to protect the revellers, who are a crucial part of this cycle.
Buildings, organisers and establishments should protect their visitors from fire and crime, to the best of their ability. Enough is enough.