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Sakaja bans hawking on Nairobi's footbridges

Nairobi Governor Johnson Sakaja. [Samson Wire. Standard].

Nairobi Governor Johnson Sakaja has banned hawking on Nairobi's footbridges in a bid to curb crime in the Central Business District (CBD).

Speaking to the media after attending a church service and fundraiser at AIPCA Dandora on Sunday, November 13, Sakaja also banned street families from living on pedestrian bridges.

The move comes at a time when police have reported that street families are conspirators in organised criminal syndicates in the Central Business District (CBD) citing Moi Avenue, Uhuru Highway, Haile Selassie Avenue and the area around Nairobi Railway Station as some of the crime spots at the moment.

"To make sure there is security, there were street families that were staying there [foot bridge] and gangs had infiltrated. We have cleared them and cleaned the bridge," said Sakaja.

"We will not allow anyone to live or conduct business on the footbridges or flyovers. If you want a space for trade, then we will find your space for trade but not in a public utility like that," he added.

At the same time, Sakaja said the government is working to have all boda-boda riders registered with details of where they will operate and their drop-off points in town.

This is after a section of boda-boda riders were accused of aiding criminal activities in Nairobi CBD.

"People engaged in the boda-boda sector are not thieves, there could be one or two elements who are tarnishing the name of the sector. Once we have registered all of them, the riders will have reflector jackets that will have their area of operation.

"When the riders come to town, they will have drop-off points and specific drop-off stages. We have already started the process,” the governor added.

In the recent past, there have been reports of increased criminal activities in the Central Business District (CBD).

The new Inspector General of Police Japhet Koome has warned that police will use the powers bestowed upon them by the constitution to deal with the prevailing security challenges.

“Any criminal trying to pickpocket or snatch jewellery along the streets shall have themselves to blame as they shall be dealt with firmly,” said Koome.