Nairobi County waives licence fees for night traders

Nairobi County moves to halt Sh2.5b SGR land compensation

The Nairobi City County Government will waive permit and license charges for traders in the upcoming night markets aimed at creating job opportunities for the  youth.

Nairobi Governor Dr. Evans Kidero is set to grace the launch of the pilot night market at COMESA grounds on Friday, March 25th.

The initiative, dubbed Ignite Kenya Youth Night Market, is a joint initiative of the Nairobi County Government and the Youth Agenda, a non-governmental organisation.

The youth will have an opportunity, on select weekends every month, to sell merchandise such as clothes and shoes, cosmetics, food and drinks, sports and fitness gear, electronics, arts, books, kitchen ware, decor, kids toys and many other items.

“The night markets are one way of addressing the serious youth unemployment problem which is not unique to Nairobi County but a countrywide challenge, we’re calling on the youth to take up the opportunity to make some extra income,” said the Nairobi County Executive in charge of youth affairs, Ms Anne Lokidor.

The Nairobi County Government law enforcement officers will provide security for traders at the KICC’s Comesa grounds starting 4PM and closing at about midnight.

Ms Lokidor said the county government has resolved to waive the Ksh 2,500 license fees that would have been payable by the traders, in addition to waiving permits to allow for the distribution of publicity materials. City Hall will also put the Nairobi County Fires trucks and Ambulance Services to attend to any emergencies.

The night market initiative is similar to others such as the Stop Night Market in Ontario, Canada and the Queens Night Market in New York.

“They will offer Nairobians who are busy during the day an opportunity to buy clothes and other household goods on their way from work and over the weekend,” said Ms Lokidor, who is also in charge of the ICT, Education and Social Services dockets.

The Ignite Kenya Youth Night Market initiative is also supported by the national government through the Ministry of Public Service, Youth and Gender Affairs as well as the Ford Foundation and the Good Neighbours Committee.

A recent survey released by the World Bank identified Kenya as having one of the highest youth unemployment rates both globally and even compared to neighbouring countries Uganda and Tanzania.

This is the latest partnership that the Nairobi County government has entered to support the creation of youth employment opportunities.

Earlier this month, the county government signed a similar agreement with the Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB) Foundation, which has set out a quest to create 2.5 million jobs in the next five years by supporting youthful entrepreneurs.

Through the partnership the Nairobi county government will avail its vocational training facilities for successful applicants of the KCB program.

Ms Lokidor also noted that City Hall has in the past three years offered hundreds of scholarships to academically gifted high school students from poor households to give them a chance at improving their welfare.

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