By Adow Mohamed:
Business in Nairobi’s busy Eastleigh estate was today interrupted after traders and hawkers clashed.
Angry hawkers took to the streets protesting their removal outside the shopping malls and streets after a short reinstatement by courts allowed them to transact business in Eastleigh’s First and second Avenues.
Angry hawkers stoned shopping malls and lit bonfires to block Key roads leading to confrontation with traders in the malls.
Following the chaos, traders were holed up inside the shopping malls for hours fearing attacks by the rowdy hawkers who were armed with stones and machetes before police intervened.
On Wednesday 31st August 2016, Malls owners and traders took to the streets protesting the hawkers menace, they also briefly shut their businesses.
Traders claimed that hawkers have set up makeshift outlets and displayed their items on the entrance and exit of their business premises blocking entrance. And also accused them of selling the same goods at a cheaper price and evading taxation.
Mall owners and traders matched to city hall demanding governor Kidero to intervene in the standoff.
Thereafter, in an overnight operation, hawkers’ makeshifts structures were demolished by the city askaris leading to the lock out hawkers from Eastleigh business hub.
Since then hawkers have been battling in courts to be allowed to resume their operations as usual in the streets.
They claimed that mall owners had no right to evict them as they had paid the Nairobi County license fees to operate at entrance and along the streets.