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TRADERS CLASH

Looming health crisis over unapproved meat ‘hawking’

Nairobi Public Health deputy director Wilson Langat says what is happening is not good for residents' health

In Summary

• City Hall charges Sh5,000 for health and food permit annually 

• Hawkers claimed Governor Sonko gave allowed them to conduct business

Raw chicken displayed on a stand at City Market on July 11, 2019
Raw chicken displayed on a stand at City Market on July 11, 2019
Image: MAUREEN KINYANJUI

City Hall has stepped in to avert a looming health crisis after it was revealed that meat traders with temporary stands at City Market have no health approval certificates.

City Hall has stepped in to avert a looming health crisis after it emerged that meat traders with temporary stands at City Market operate without certificates.

The market, which is located at the junction of the Muindi Mbingu Street and Market Road, receives at least 20,000 visitors per month.

 

On Monday, the vendors clashed with stall owners, who refer to them as hawkers. The stall owners termed it unfair to operate alongside individuals who pay no licence fees to City Hall. They closed their shops in protest.

“They pay only Sh50 to the county while the rest of us pay close to Sh100,000 annually for licences, health inspections, electricity bills and other charges,” Cyrus Kamundia said.

Traders at City Market on July 10, 2019
Traders at City Market on July 10, 2019
Image: MAUREEN KINYANJUI

But the hawkers claimed Governor Mike Sonko had given them the greenlight to conduct business in the market.

By Wednesday, the market was back to normal. On Thursday, Nairobi Public Health deputy director Wilson Langat said the matter was being tackled.  

“What’s happening at City Market is not good for our health, but we are solving it. Yesterday [Wednesday], we had a meeting at Nyayo House,” he said.

Some of the hawkers use crates to display their meat products for sale. They pay a Sh50 daily fee. 

On the other hand, however, stall traders spend about Sh12,500 on monthly rent and about Sh40,000 on electricity.

 

They also pay Sh4,500 in annual fire safety fees, Sh40,000 for Halal permits, Sh5,000 for health and food permit and Sh2,650 in licence fees.

(Edited by F'Orieny)