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Nakuru town east MP David Gikaria injured in hawkers' eviction drama

Nakuru, Kenya: Nakuru town east MP David Gikaria is nursing back-injuries after he was assaulted by police officers deployed to oversee the eviction of hawkers from the streets in the town's Central Business District (CBD).

According to Mr Gikaria, concerned residents called him at 2am yesterday expressing concerns that county askaris accompanied by police started to implement Governor Kinuthia Mbugua's order to evict hawkers from the streets despite a pending court case.

"I arrived at the main-bus terminus at 2.30 am and found county employees implementing the orders. But when I tried to ask them to wait until morning before clearing the bus terminus, I was attacked by police officers who were in riot gear," Gikaria claimed yesterday.

The lawmaker claimed to have sought treatment at Aga Khan clinic located on West-side Mall in Nakuru town where he underwent scanning to establish extent of his injuries.

Details on the attack were scanty, as none who witnessed the incident was willing to come out speak about it.

The Standard could not independently confirm the extent of the Mp's injuries but Gikaria said he was experiencing pain in the back as a result of the beating.

"As we speak, I'm waiting for the doctor to carry out further tests," said Gikaria when reached for comments.

Police declined to comment on the alleged assault on the MP saying they were yet to receive any such reports.

A senior officer who was in charge of the contingent of officers deployed to oversee the eviction of hawkers declined to comment on the issue referring us to the Police Spokesperson in Nairobi.

"As you we are not allowed to comment on police operations to the media. Please seek comments from the spokesperson," said the officer, who we cannot name because he is not authorized to comment in the media.

The legislator has been opposed to plans by the county government to remove hawkers from the Central Business District without a proper plan on where they would operate from.

He has in the past protested the demolition of kiosks and food stalls located along roads reserves arguing the move would renders many jobless.

But the governor in his address during last year's Jamuhuri Day celebrations at Afraha Stadium had given street venders up to December 31, 2014 to move out of the CBD.

The nuisance of illegal hawking in Nakuru town has been a constant headache to the county officials.

Despite, introducing various measures to curb the mushrooming hawker population lining the streets, the county officials haven't been able to implement a permanent solution for the long standing issue.

The hawkers through their association- Nakuru Street Traders and Hawkers (Natsha) obtained an order to stop the eviction that was extended to January 7, 2015.