BY PETER KARANJA
Kenyans visiting the capital are no longer allowed to sit on the pavement in front of the Kenya National Archives – idling.
The pavement which in the past provided a good resting spot currently looks deserted – and no one seems to understand clearly why this is the situation – and no one from the government has been generous enough to offer an explanation.
The well-done pavement which had provided a fertile playing ground for city preachers, cons, thugs and innocent travels trying to catch their breath as they enjoy the magnificent Tom MBOYA statue, now looks like an abandoned site.
Occasionally you will find a young man clad in civilian clothes, and wearing a cap and fiddling with a small wooden rod ready to deal with those who would attempt to sit on the pavement.
Mwanagabari.co.ke spoke to a few Kenyans on this matter.
Ruth who was in Nairobi to pick her niece who was travelling from the village said: “I came to wait for my niece, at Tom Mboya statue, but when I went to take a seat… someone asked me to vacate. I don’t know why.”
Other sources told Mwanahabari that the move may have been security related – and meant to safeguard the country.
“The police are probably trying to avoid situations where idlers with ill motives just come to the CBD, sit wherever and plan criminal acts,” Johansen, a hawker next to Archives told Mwanahabari.
Adding: “This spot carries all manner of people. You will even find people who just come here to look at women passing in front of Archives building.”
“I have seen many people get conned by people posing as either beggars, preachers or just lost travelers seeking direction,” said Johansen.
The move comes just days after a bomb incident claimed lives in Uganda’s capital Kampala.
Then there was the daring escape of three terror convicts from Kamiti prisons that same week… events many believe may have forced the security apparatus to take certain actions.
Interior CS Fred Matiang’i recently asked the public to brace themselves for ‘inconveniences’ informed by security threats due to political unrest and events in neighbouring countries.
“We have raised the level of alertness and effected far-reaching changes. We are not out of the woods yet. We are in an unusual space because of what is happening around us,” said Matiangi.
He noted that screening systems at the airports and the SGR would be enhanced.