Eldoret, Kenya: There was shock and dismay in Eldoret when over 500 children were arrested in an orgy of drugs, alcohol and sex at a basement club.
The swoop was conducted by police and officials from National Authority for the Campaign against Alcohol and Drug Abuse (Nacada).
The juveniles were part of revelers, who were in frenzy of fun at the Sam's Discotheque club in the White Castle building just opposite the Eldoret Police Station, along Uganda road.
Police had a hectic time restraining the suspects who attempted to escape from the dragnet. They were forced to use teargas canisters to contain the patrons.
Rolls of bhang, khat, 'muguka' and several used and unused condoms were found at the premises that operates on Sundays only.
- 1 Ex-Aston Villa star handed two-year suspended sentence over sex-tape scandal
- 2 Violent students: A loud cry for support
- 3 Western Kenya’s girl-child in danger
- 4 How alcoholism trickles down generations
Alcohol in sachets and banned alcohol brands were also recovered in the operation. The club operates on Sundays from 1pm to 6.30pm.
A police lorry made 12 trips ferrying the teens from the club to the police station, which is 20m away as uniformed and plain clothes police keenly supervised the exercise.
Parents whose children failed to arrive home reported to the police station to check on the fate of their children after information went viral on social media.
Parents were forced to part with Sh1000 for their children to be freed from the police cells, in what police termed as cash bail.
Uasin Gishu alcohol control board chairman Amstrong Rono, who led the operation at the discotheque, said they had been investigating the premise for operating without due diligence and selling alcohol to the underage.
He said the premises will remain closed adding that the manager and employees who were working at the time of the operation, have been arrested and will be arraigned in court.
Rono said the suspects will be arraigned in court once police are done with investigations. He urged parents to be vigilant.
"Those arrested were aged between 13 and 18. They are school going children," said Rono.
Eldoret West Acting OCPD Samson Rukunga the juveniles were taken to police custody for protection in compliance with the Children's act.
"The children were taken to safe custody after it emerged that majority were under the age of 18 and we are currently handing them over to their parents." said Rukunga.
The police chief stated that adults, who were arrested alongside the minors, will be charged together with the patrons, who were operating the pub.
He called upon parents to be cautious of their childrens’ movements.
Parents, who could not raise the Sh1000 on Sunday, flocked the Police Station on Monday to release their children who had spent the night in the police cells.
The irate parents blamed authorities for laxity and called for immediate closure of pubs operating without licenses.