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Nairobi MCAs Plans To Lift Governor Sakaja Ban On Nightclubs

The Nairobi County Assembly ordered Governor Johnson Sakaja to rescind the November 25 closure order on nightclubs. City lawmakers said the order was ambiguous and affects all clubs, even those that do.

Councilors on Friday afternoon received the report of the Committee on Culture and Community Services at the request of the Pubs, Entertainment and Restaurants Association of Kenya.

PERAK complained that Governor Sakaja's order was arbitrary and the district government issued a permit for businesses to operate as night clubs.

Despite the fact that only 400 of the 12,000 licensed bars in Nairobi are allowed to operate at night, the blanket order has empowered police officers from the district headquarters to enforce the order ruthlessly. It puts at risk the income of about 60,000 workers in the industry, which generates KSh 60 billion annually.

The MCAs ordered the executive officers of the district administration and the national police to stop immediately pending an explanation of the order.

The order change was prompted by Governor Sakaja's request to consult with Vice President Rigathi Gachagua before making any decisions affecting businesses in the capital. The governor ordered matatus to stop entering the city center.

In a report released on Thursday, the MCA also sought a review of revoked licenses for nightclubs.

Part of the appeal of PERAK is that the city plan contains gray areas that blur the lines between commercial and residential areas.

The provincial assembly, PERAK, residents' associations and the Municipal Government are holding joint consultations in the coming months to formulate an operational framework for night clubs and restaurants in residential areas.

The Council also asked: "The Executive Department of City Planning provides a precise definition of residential and commercial areas."

Although nightclubs exist in Nairobi's Central Business District, many have been forced to close or downsize as law enforcement against drink driving and business dynamics run outside the city.

Urban growth and urban sprawl have led to massive and often uncontrolled development in Nairobi's urban estates and urban areas.

MCA has given PERAK six to 12 months to ensure that all clubs and restaurants in residential areas are soundproofed.

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Committee on Culture Johnson Sakaja MCAs Nairobi County Assembly Sakaja Ban


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