Someone Tell Kanjo That A Hawker Is A Hawker Despite The Wares


So last night as my pal (Chachko) and I walked to Railways to pick a mat home, we saw a Nairobi City Council vehicle pull up somewhere along Harambee Avenue. A man and two women jumped out and pointed the driver towards Moi Avenue.
They appeared to be aware where their target – A group of women selling good stuffs outside Tuskys Pioneer.
They dint seem to be in luck as the women spotted them early enough to collect most of their wares and run off. Some carrying babies on their backs.
But while the women ran off, a group of young men was still comfortably selling women shoes a few metres away.
We all know that hawking within the CBD is illegal. So why did the NCC officers target the women and leave the young men?
As we concluded with my pal, it boils down to how much bribe you can pay to these guys. Its no secret that hawkers who sell clothing stuff and shoes are rarely harassed by Kanjo.
It can take a pair or two of shoes to get a good bribe and have more time to sell many more pairs. But how much carrots, peas or onions do the running women need to match that bribe?
We know that Kanjo has a role to clean up city streets off hawkers though they really come to our rescue at times when we need something fast and cheaply. However, they should not be allowed to harass some while others enjoy the freedom.

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2 thoughts on “Someone Tell Kanjo That A Hawker Is A Hawker Despite The Wares

  1. I’m saddened that there is discrimination even for the hawkers, I guess the sad part is that corruption is too rampant in this country, from the leaders to the individuals themselves.

  2. I hear what you are saying… however somehow your title struck me to think that a hawker remains a hawker despite them changing their wares or location but if they never change their mindsets then they’ll remain in their wars with Kanjo. Perhaps there is a bigger problem which we are refusing to address: Why are there hawkers on our streets? Does building Muthuruwa really solve the actual problem? What other options are there for these people to make money and be self sustaining? Can they be taken off the streets and taught other money making skills other than selling veggies/clothes on the city streets while carrying their babies on their backs? Or will they remain hawkers because there really isn’t any other option? Food for thought.

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