Commercial sex workers together with their clients will still be arrested unless the City by-laws are amended to legitimise the trade, Nairobi Mayor George Aladwa said on Sunday.
A Committee appointed by Mr Aladwa will within two weeks analyse the City by-laws that illegalise prostitution and make recommendations on how to respond on the issue. Read: (Nairobi Mayor hints at legalising prostitution)
“As has been the case before, the Council will not allow sex trade to flourish under any circumstances as it’s against the law,” said Mr Aladwa.
Until then, Mr Aladwa said frequent crackdowns on prostitution would continue, and further ordered they be extended to high-end estates targeting not only the commercial sex workers but also their clients.
And once the swoops are carried out in the “high end estates,” Mr Aladwa said Kenyans would be shocked by the list of clientele.
“Kenyans will be shocked that those shouting the loudest, criticising my boldness to tackle the vice, are actually beneficiaries of the illicit sex trade. Only time will tell when suspects are arraigned in court,” he said.
Besides the by-laws, prostitution is prohibited in sections of Acts of Parliament but this has not stopped the trade from flourishing.
The Committee led by Assistant Town Clerk in charge of Reforms Mr Daniel Masetu, will review laws governing hawking, street families and the matatu industry.“Arresting and arraigning the alleged prostitutes is the end result but the question should be how we can tackle the vice,” said Mr Aladwa.
He added: “I wish to state that most, if not all of the victims involved in the trade are not there by choice but by circumstance. However, this does not mean they should operate beyond the precincts of the law.”
Mr Aladwa also noted that some City by-laws are “archaic and irrelevant in today’s running of the council.” such sections should be aligned with provisions of the current Constitution.
The City Mayor formed a Committee on Friday last week when a group of civil activists visited his office.