Nairobi City County Business and hustler opportunity Sector embarked on a two-day public participation Forum on licensing and zoning of nightclubs and the construction of rehabilitation centres.
The County under Governor Johnson Sakaja has come up with plans which include no licenses for nightclubs in residential areas, operating hours for bars and restaurants operating in residential areas, soundproofing of premises to recommended standards, and encouraging businesses to move back to the CBD to boost night-time economy.
The Nairobi City County Alcoholic Drinks Control and Licensing Act, 2014, provides for the formation of a Fund to be used for meeting expenditures relating to promoting cessation and rehabilitation programs in the county. In alignment with this, the Nairobi City County Licensing Board proposed to set up outpatient treatment and rehabilitation service centers in all five proposed boroughs to support affected persons’ recovery and reintegration back into society.
In April, the County Executive Committee approved the establishment of the first-of-its-kind centre at Sinai Health Facility, in Embakasi East.
“H.E the Governor under his plan to make Nairobi a City of Hope, order, dignity and opportunity is committed to bring order in the liquor business so we want to ensure that we’ve regulated and controlled the entire industry and I want to assure you that your input will be considered when we prepare zoning policies for entertainment areas,” said County Director for liquor license Ms Rhoda Otieno.
“The county government is also looking to introduce rehabilitation services to be offered with primary healthcare so one of these hospitals will be identified to cater to alcohol addicts within this area as the county is also looking forward to establishing its own rehabilitation centres within the sub-counties.”
She was speaking in Dagoretti North during the first day of public participation.
“As a county government, we are adamant about ensuring that our youths are not becoming alcoholics. We want to support businesses but at the same time encourage responsible drinking,” she added.
The forums aim at informing the members of the public the areas identified for the operations of nightclubs, get views of the members of the public on the areas that can be designated for such businesses, and create a framework for handling complaints arising from liquor business premises.