• Tue. Jan 31st, 2023

Nairobi County markets director, blamed in a row over City Park market stalls allocation

Dec 2, 2022
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The long row over the irregular allocation of market stalls at the Nairobi City Park market has continued to haunt the Nairobi County Markets Department Director Joyce Kyengo following a petition that has now been filed by the City Park Hawkers Development Project seeking an audience with Nairobi Governor and the adherence to the prerogative court orders that directed the that the old City Park traders be allocated spaces at the market.

According to the group, city park hawkers development project whose matter was heard ex-parte a the Milimani law courts (Judicial Review No.E074 of 2021), all fingers point at the county markets director who allegedly oversaw the irregular allocation of stalls to new traders after renovations following a fire that razed down the market in 2015.

In their pleadings, the hawkers’ group noted that their investigations revealed that more than 650 traders including persons with disability were left out during the exercise of allocating traders new stalls while there is evidence that there was the displacement of the original stall owners. All this, they claim was overseen by the Nairobi County Market Department Director Madam Joyce, and two other officers, Mr. Githaiga and Mr. Joshua who were part of the team that made this whole process a mess.

The traders in their suit as well listed The State Department for Housing and Urban Development as respondents for misleading the county government and contributing to the displacement of original stall owners.

The City Park Hawkers Development project chairperson and several other market leaders allegedly colluded with the County markets director to deny traders their right to own stalls at the market, even after they had been made to contribute a sum of Kshs 5000 for the reconstruction of the stalls and another Kshs 600 for fresh labeling of the new structures.

The traders now want to have an audience with the Governor to air their grievances noting that amid their tribulations, those mentioned as well as officers of the City park secretariat own more than six stalls each at the detriment of the original stall owners.

Following the reconstruction of the popular market after the inferno, things took a different twist in July 2021 when the original serial numbers on the stalls were replaced with new serial numbers leaving the old traders without claim to their stalls which were then allocated to new traders.

The allocations were done by the Nairobi County Markets Department and the Ministry of Transport, Infrastructure, Housing, Urban Development, and Public works who colluded with the chairperson of the hawkers. The chairperson ironically was the one who filed the first case against the irregular stalls allocation before making a U-turn to sing the song of the County Markets Director.

The stalls were allegedly sold at the cost of Kshs 15,625 each and cartels currently collect Kshs 800 daily on behalf of the market department head.

The County Market Department played a key role in displacing the original stall owners and replacing them with different people and this led the City Park Hawkers Development Project to seek justice and intervention in the Judiciary.

The court issued a prerogative order of prohibition directed against the Ministry of Transport, Infrastructure, Housing, Urban Development, and Public works, Nairobi City County, Nairobi Metropolitan Services, and the Nairobi regional commissioner prohibiting them from allocating market space to 689 traders who had been earlier mentioned in a section of the media.

The court also directed the respondents to allocate 1075 registered members of the City Park Hawkers Development Project space at the City Park Market, orders which the Nairobi County Markets Department Director Madam Joyce has blatantly refused to implement.

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