RUNNING BATTLES

Police teargas anti-Finance Bill protesters in Mombasa

No single arrest was reported during the demonstrations.

In Summary
  • The rains did not deter the protesters from getting into the streets.
  • Learning at the Coast Girls’ High School was affected after a teargas canister allegedly landed within the school compound.
Police use teargas to disperse crowds protesting against Finance Bill, 2024, in Mombasa on Wednesday.
Police use teargas to disperse crowds protesting against Finance Bill, 2024, in Mombasa on Wednesday.
Image: LABAN WALLOGA

Hundreds of Mombasa residents on Wednesday took to the streets to protest against the Finance Bill, 2024, and the high cost of living.

The protesters arrived in the town centre as early as 9am, but heavy police presence along Moi Avenue and the rain that was pounding the city, delayed the protest.

The famous Mapembeni area, which was supposed to be the central meeting point, had been cordoned off by the police.

Residents were being mobilised to come out into the streets through social media and WhatsApp platforms that had been created for that purpose.

“Please go back home, we don’t have any street demonstrations,” a senior police officer told residents.

At around 11am, police lobbed teargas canisters along Moi Avenue to disperse the crowd that was growing big.

The demonstrations were witnessed along Moi Avenue, Digo Road and Kenyatta Avenue in the central business district.  

The protesters were carrying placards with anti-Finance Bill, 2024, slogans and singing anti-government songs.

They said the Finance Bill should be rejected in totality.

“We are tired, we are tired. We have had enough,” they chanted along the streets.

After police lobbed teargas, the protesters regrouped and walked to Central police station in Mombasa CBD to deliver printed notices to “prove they had informed the police about their planned demonstrations”.

However, despite the peaceful demonstration and kneeling as a sign of surrender, the protesters were again teargassed, forcing them to scamper for safety.

Learning at Coast Girls’ High School, which is adjacent to the Central police station was affected after a teargas canister allegedly landed in the school compound.

The protesters engaged the police in running battles before regrouping again at Mwembe Tayari. They tried to access the town centre but were blocked.

The protesters decided to move out of town.

Heavy traffic snarl-up was witnessed along Digo Road and Abdel Nasser Road as the protesters moved towards Nyali Bridge.

A police truck was following them at a distance.

There was no single arrest reported.

Calm resumed at around 3pm.

WATCH: The latest videos from the Star