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200 Arrested Inside Moses Kuria’s Pub in Utawala

Some of the 200 suspects arrested. [PHOTO/ COURTESY]

At least 200 people were on Friday arrested at Avery Lounge, owned by Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria, violating social distancing rules and the 9pm to 4am curfew.

The arrests followed a sting operation by police in Utawala, that saw the facility raided by police in the recent months for violating Ministry of Health rules.

The suspects were taken to Kayole and Ruai police stations as they await arraignment on Monday.

Locals say that the Lounge operates with impunity, and continued to operate even after several other people were arrested a fortnight ago in the facility, including the area MCA.

The 200 are among 255 people arrested in Nairobi for flouting COVID-19 regulations, with the others being nabbed at roadblocks.

Yesterday, the Ministry of Health expressed concern over the misconduct of bars and restaurants in Nairobi.

Read: MOH Issues Warning to Eateries Selling Alcohol, Cites Gross Misconduct

The Director of Public Health, Dr Francis Kuria, said it was disheartening that many Restaurant owners were defying the MoH protocols and had turned their premises into full blown operating bars.

“You have asked for closure by yourselves and don’t blame anyone. The decision that will be announced on Monday after the summit will be as a result of gross misconduct by these restaurants,” Dr Francis Kuria said.

According to the Pubs Entertainment and Restaurant Association of Kenya (Perak), at least 20,000 joints are still shut countrywide with 5,000 in Nairobi and 4,000 in Mombasa.

Kuria said that it had been noted that several bars were operating illegally and security officials had been instructed to crack down on them.

He reiterated that the reopening measures spelt out by the President only targeted eateries and it was still a puzzle how bars are also operating without obtaining clearance certificates.

“These bars are operating illegally. Take note that if your bar is closed and permit withdrawn don’t blame anyone,” Dr Kuria noted.

CS Mutahi Kagwe had earlier warned that the reopening of eateries was not a permit for bars to sell alcohol.

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Written by Francis Muli

Senior reporter at Kahawa Tungu, Muli has a passion for human interest stories. Believes in unearthing societal rots that have been hidden from the public eye.
Follow me on Twitter @FmuliKE. Email francis@kahawatungu.com

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