By MERCY KAHENDA
Hawkers and street vendors in Nakuru town have vowed not to move from the streets despite orders by the Municipal Council to evict them.
The hawkers say the eviction order is a breach of memorandum with Governor Kinuthia Mbugua. The traders say the council askaris ordered them to move from the street yesterday morning.
Mr Moses Chege, a trader on the town’s Kenyatta Avenue said that officers from the council took all his products and ordered him to move out of the streets though he was not show where to trade from. “Municipal askaris came to my business location very early in the morning and forced me to move out,” alleged Chege.
Following the operation by municipal askaris, the hawkers demonstrated carrying twigs as they matched to the council’s offices where they were addressed by the National Street Vendors (NSV) Chairman Simon ole Nasieku. Speaking to The Standard, the Mr Nasieku condemned action by the council, saying the memorandum had been breached. The chairman said the council should not harass the hawkers till they are allocated better trading areas. “Streets vendors will continue operating in their areas within town till decent trading malls are offered to them by the municipal,” said Nasieku.
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He said Mr Mbugua should intervene and implement all the promises signed in the memorandum on October 19 last year. “The eviction of street traders is against the signed memorandum between the Governor and traders, which is not acceptable,” complained Nasieku. He said the council authority should respect the memorandum, if not the traders will file a case in court.
“Traders are operating on the streets for lack of decent space and if the harassment continues, they are ready to file a case in court,” added Nasieku. Also present was Biashara Ward Representative Stephen Kuria, who urged traders to remain calm as the council and leaders find a lasting solution.
Witnesses to the memorandum include former Deputy Mayor Damaris Mbuthia, the Parliamentary Member for Nakuru East Town David Gikaria and Nasieku.
Business operators in Nakuru raised the alarm last month over the increased number of hawkers in the streets, claiming hawkers had invaded entrances to their businesses.