By Michael Guba
Selling goods in public places has become a big problem in the National Capital District, a magistrate says.
Magistrate Laura Kuvi, presiding at Boroko District Court, said vendors initially sold soft drinks on the streets of the city but have now gone to selling other goods such as betel nut and cigarettes in public places in the city.
Kuvi made these comments when convicting Nancy Joe, a mother of three who was charged with selling goods at the Gerehu bus stop in NCD.
On Thursday, July 7, Joe, who was ignorant of the laws in place, was selling peanuts, eggs and betel nuts at the Gerehu bus stop when police officers apprehended her, and took her to the police station and charged her under the NCD Litter Act.
Kuvi said it was illegal to sell goods at public places such as bus stops and infront of shops. There are proper markets in place for vendors to use.
“We are in the city and there are laws and reasons for these laws.”
Kuvi said petty criminals often conducted their illegal activities while being harboured by these street vendors.
The court told Joe from Wabag district in Enga, to pay a fine of K50 as penalty for the offence on the grounds that she was a first time offender, she was honest enough to follow up on her case and that she had children to take care of.
Meanwhile, Joe’s sister Mala Joe, who was also arrested at the same time, was charged with obstruction of police duty.
Mala allegedly pulled the shirt of a police officer, obstructing him from carrying out his duties. Mala is alleged to have stopped him by punching him on the face.
She pleaded not guilty. The court adjourned her case to Aug 3 for trial.
She appeared on a K100 police bail and the court converted it to court bail.
She was given bail conditions that she remain at her family residence, in NCD and not to interfere with witnesses.
By Michael Guba