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Who are the Mungiki

Welcome to Nairobi, unofficially a city where petroleum is more widely accessible than piped water. It is also a crime ridden city, with high income estates been targeted more than the (mostly low income) Eastlands area. In my last article, we explored crime in the Eastlands in the form of a matatu hijacking.

Following the article, I received feed back of crime in areas along Thika road. The first revelation was that most matatus plying the Nairobi -Githurai 45(and areas in between) will rarely be hijacked. The second revelation was criminals operate matatus on the same route. To expound on this, criminals run matatus which they specifically "hijack" and rob passengers. The third revelation is that the police have little to do with the crime situation(or lack of it) on areas along Thika road till Githurai.

The Mungiki are the people in charge of this area. The reason why matatus will rarely be hijacked and why criminals own their own matatus is because of the Mungiki. Matatus plying the route pay an annual protection fee of kshs. 150,000 for buses and kshs. 100,000 for 14 seater matatus. In case where such a matatu is hijacked, they report to the Mungiki.The Mungiki then pursue the robbers who make such mistakes, and most of them end up dead. For you to be a successful criminal in this area, you have to own your own matatu; you just don't go hijacking any matatu.

The Mungiki are also in charge of security and provision of social services in the area stretching from the Mathare valley to Githurai 45. In their Mathare strong hold, residents pay a monthly ksh. 50 security fee. In case of a robbery at your house or business, you report to the Mungiki office. Your goods will be returned and the thief will personally apologise to you. In the same area, the Mungiki collect rubbish from each household. Probably, they are also in charge of water and electricity provision in the same areas. This guys do their job with efficiency. even the Nairobi city council cannot match their efficiency.

In case you decide to go on a fact finding mission in the area, do not try to take any girl out. Please find out if she is one of the Mungiki guys girlfriends first. Apparently, those who make such moves soon find the Mungiki(instead of cupid) at their door steps. They then engage in a talk, which usually evolves in to a heated argument. The culprit is then whisked away for "talking badly". Good luck finding his remains.

Comments

s.m.muraya said…
This violent culture will weaken as good governance and civilized politics prevails in Kenya.

Good governance will ensure that violent politicians (tribal warlords) who incite their destructive followers to hurt innocent civilians end up behind bars.

Then there will be less drive for groups which are initially formed for self defense (before evolving into mafias) like the Mungiki to exist. It is a hard (and short) life for them too.

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