The County Government of Turkana has aggressively moved in to shut down shops which have been operating in Kanamkemer Ward, Lodwar without license following an expiry of public notice last week Friday.
A joint team composed of technical senior officers drawn from trade, revenue, public health and enforcement have vowed to continue inspecting the businesses operating in the Municipality to single out and close down wholesale and retail shops that have no business permits as required.
Director of Trade Wilson Ejie, who was the team leader said his officers are out of offices to ensure there is total compliance to the Turkana County Business License and Finance Act.
“We will keep the pace of inspection around Lodwar Municipality and its environs for a month to ensure the crackdown on those unscrupulous traders who have no permits and public health certificates are forced to close down shops for 12 hours or face total closure of business,” Stated Director Ejie.
Close to 20 shops were shut down in Kanamkemer after the crackdown intensified. They included Lapur General Store, Loteteleit Company Ltd, Nakuluja traders & Haircut, Yellow Stream Auto Spares, Koima’s Collections, Sajos General Shop, Pure water Shop, various eateries and hotels, Farmdeal Agriculture grocery, the hood Cyber, various welding workshops, Turkrift Shuttle booking office, wines and spirits shops and various wholesale and retail shops in Kanamkemer.
Ejie decried the conduct by traders to give up their obligation to pay for the business licenses denying government revenue to provide the residents of Turkana of essential services in return.
At the same time, the director gave a stern warning to all the traders across major towns that the crackdown will extend to other towns outside Lodwar Municipality to ensure Turkana residents are well protected against exploitative traders across the County.
This crackdown comes days after the same team mopped out traders in Lodwar town who were selling underweight cereal bags, a move that saw some wholesale shops closed down. The shops have so far been opened after they complied.
In the inspection team were Kwaba Omwenga (Public health), Peter Nangiro and Peter Ariko (Revenue) and Jacob Alekedio (team lead, enforcement).
By Peter Gitonga