BY UPESI REPORTER,NAIROBI,18TH DEC,2021-Fire engulfed stalls at the Gikomba market, on Saturday morning, December 18, two weeks after a section of the trade centre burned down. In a video that has been doing rounds in social media, traders could be seen trying to salvage the remains of their stock, with some counting losses worth millions.
Nairobi County firefighters rushed to the scene to put off the fire whose cause is yet to be established. The fire brigade was accompanied by emergency service providers and police. The detectives combed the area searching for clues to the cause of the fire.
The incident comes a fortnight after another fire burned down stalls at the market on November 28, 2021. Amateur footage of the fire at Gikomba market, Nairobi on Saturday morning, December 18, 2021File This was the sixth fire breakout in a period of two months.
Witnesses and victims raised alarm on the string of fires at the popular market, with many blaming it on arsons and cartels. The Saturday morning, December 18 incident occurred a few days after the government unveiled plans to build a call centre and install CCTV areas at Gikomba market. Treasury Cabinet Secretary, Ukur Yatani, lamented not only traders but also the whole country shoulder the burden and effects of arson attacks at the centre. “Fire outbreaks that have constantly evolved in the Gikomba market of Nairobi County have posed a threat to the economic well-being of thousands of self-employed traders.“In the past decade, the Gikomba market has reported cases of fire outbreaks that have constantly been linked to arson attacks as opposed to natural occurrences,” Yatani wrote in the 2022 Budget Policy Statement (BPS)
.He disclosed that the government listed the fires at Gikomba as an act of terrorism that affects the economy. Other than building CCTV centres to monitor the open-air market, the government is further planning to drill boreholes to provide running water for fire brigades in case of emergencies.The government also cautioned arsons, stating that they will be subjected to the full wrath of the law.