Most aggressive City Askaris ever

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Most aggressive City Askaris ever

Kanjo is a sheng word which refers to Municipal Askaris in various urban areas in Kenya. Yesterday I was in Kisii Town and was surprised by the way the City Askaris were armed with ‘emesuago’ (the wooden parts of hoes).

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Later on, as I was heading home I made an inquiry by interrogating the boda boda riders. Subsequently, I was reliably informed that the Kisii County Government  had attempted to prohibit bodas bodas from the town center but did not succeed due to violent running battles between enforcement officers and boda boda operators. The county government decided to meet the boda boda operators half way by allowing them to access town but with condition that they do not pry the route where County headquarters and County Assembly are located.

When I saw the armed County askaris I was rudely reminded that the state enjoys a monopoly of violence. However, it should not abuse that monopoly in a gangster style.

The city Askaris I am told use their crude weapons to control the motorcyclists who are reported to be very aggressive when it comes to seeking for a livelihood. They cannot be stopped by word of mouth but through tough action. I find it strange that they have to be tackled using those crude weapons. The city askaris just throw those wooden sticks in between the motorbike wheel spokes which effectively makes the rider to fall down on the tarmac road. This is only done when the rider refuses to stop at the check point.

I swear this is the first time I’ve ever seen City Askaris being armed to the teeth and doing so in broad day light. Taxation has its ugly part.

In my next blog article, I will conduct detailed analysis and share findings with you by attempting to answer the following important questions:

a) How much does Kisii County collect from its own sources of revenue?

b) Which is the leading source of revenue for Kisii County?

c) What percentage comes from boda bodas?

d) Highlight of salient issues in Kisii County budget.

See you in my next blog article. Adios.

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Geoffrey Kerosi, economic and public policy analyst based in Nairobi City. Email: WhatsApp: +254713 639 776 YouTube: Kerosi TV

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