NAIROBI, Kenya, Apr 5 – Nairobi residents risk arrest for buying goods from hawkers in the Central Business District if the Trade Bill which seeks to have people buying goods from street vendors arrested and fined in a court of law, is passed by the city MCAs.
This is in a bid to eliminate street hawkers in Nairobi’s Central Business District, who year in year out have been engaging in running battles with city’s law enforcement agents in some instances resulting to fatal outcomes.
County’s Minister for Trade and Tourism Allan Igambi has urged the MCAs to speed up in passing the Bill which he says will assist in dealing with the hawkers’ menace in the CBD.
“I urge the MCA s to pass this Bill, this will not be a way to collect money but a deterrent to the menace,” he said.
This Bill was developed during Governor Evans Kidero’s administration but the MCAs during that time didn’t pass it.
According to Igambi, this is also a way to maintain food hygiene because you find that most hawkers sell food items on streets and pavements which are dirty hence compromising the health of city residents.
Also they sell food items without the required licenses to handle food from the public health and so forth.
He further says this it will ensure fair competition because hawkers have invaded streets obstructing access to shops and supermarkets that have paid the necessary licenses for the business premises.
“Some even have stalls but leave them to come and hawk in front of other business premises, this is what we want to deal with,” he added.
If the Bill is passed, both the hawkers and the buyers will be fined Sh2,000 on the spot.
The County Government is currently renovating the city’s markets in order to expand their capacity, and accommodate more hawkers.