October 19th 2017

Top Stories / Counties

Do Nairobi City askaris have the capacity to handle offenders?

It was a disgusting scene where the hawker who defied arrest sought to lie on the pavement, but the askaris kept dragging him forward. The man kept screaming to attract sympathy from the public, but onlookers milled around the area only to observe the unfolding torture as a form of entertainment.

By Julius ChemiteiFriday, 09 Dec 2016 13:59 EAT

This morning, Nairobi City Askaris patrolling on car number KAT 145T Nissan Urvan were seen violently arresting hawkers who rose up early to catch the eyes of potential buyers along Muindi Mbingu Road. A team of reporters from the Kenya Free Press coming from a meeting in the area saw the askaris manhandling a middle aged hawker at the intersection of Moktar Daddah Street and Muindi Mbingu street.

It was a disgusting scene where the hawker who defied arrest sought to lie on the pavement, but the askaris kept dragging him forward. The man kept screaming to attract sympathy from the public, but onlookers milled around the area only to observe the unfolding torture as a form of entertainment. A few people however complained about rampant manhandling of hawkers by the county askaris.

 

Procedurally according to city laws, it’s expected that a county askari who finds one with an the offence is supposed to read to the alleged offender the section under which the arrest is being carried out for instance for illegal hawking it reads;

   Any person without a valid permit or hawks in an undesignated area risks having their goods impounded.

   Each person engaging in hawking must have a badge and wear it at a conspicuous place.

   Council officers have a right to inspect any goods/articles being hawked. Blocking an officer from performing that duty is an offence.

The situation this morning according to the eye witnesses did not reflect this and instead it involved pull and push just to ensure that the offenders get into the van regardless of their rights.

The writer, an experienced journalist, is a contributing reporter for the Kenya Free Press





Stay Connected