NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 24 – A Chinese restaurant at the centre of a race row with African patrons has been temporarily shut down over defective licensing.
The restaurant in Nairobi’s Kilimani area was ordered shut by the Nairobi County Government on Tuesday afternoon.
“The owners of the restaurant have no change of user from residential to commercial which is a requirement to operate a business in Nairobi,” Nairobi Governor Evans Kidero said in a brief statement.
He further said the restaurant owners did not have a valid liquor license and have not complied with the public health requirements for food handling and testing “despite orders to do so within the specified period.”
He explained: “As of now the restaurant will remain closed until they comply with all set rules and regulations. We have deployed security officers around the premises.”
“I would also like to urge business holders to treat customers and clients fairly irrespective of race, tribe, religious affiliation, sex and colour,” Governor Kidero emphasised.
The restaurant has been in the news lately after African patrons were denied entry after 5pm.
The issue also came up in Parliament after Gem MP Jakoyo Midiwo asked the Speaker to allow a probe by the Parliamentary Committee on Security saying that the constitution outlaws such discrimination.
The committee on Administration and National Security chaired by Tiaty Member of Parliament Asman Kamama is also set to commence investigations revolving around the allegations.
Kenyans have also expressed anger over the discrimination on social media.
Two hashtags; #RacistRestaurant , #NoBlacksHere were trending on Tuesday after the story was aired on Monday night.
Here are some of the reactions:
@MikeSonko The reason i say Kenyans ni watu wazuri is because in places like Zanzibar..foreigners & racists humwagiwa acid almost daily #NoBlacksHere
@SingoeiJoylene Now that they constructed Thika Super Highway, will they also impose a no driving past 5pm for blacks on that road? #NoBlacksHere
?@SingoeiJoylene We’ve been yelling at ICC that we are a sovereign State yet Chinese have imposed a 5pm curfew for Kenyans in their land #RacistRestaurant
@Berndkush #RacistRestaurant why can’t we first sort our issues around tribalism…seeing the speck and not the log in your eyes.