Though prostitution is not legal in Kenya, the law is rarely enforced and it still takes place even in broad daylight. Brothels in Nairobi operate pretty much like any small business. Visitors select from a line-up of women in heavy make-up and scanty clothing, they negotiate a price and pay a for room. In the first part of this series we showed you the photos of the establishments and in case you missed it you can read all about it here;
Mpasho Investigates Part 1: These Are The Brothels In Nairobi Which Are Open During The Day (PHOTOS)
I recently went undercover in several Nairobi brothels and was surprised to find out that there was a church on top of one of the brothels and worshipers have to pass through the brothel to get to the house of worship. There is no difference with what I had heard on TV and stories told by friends. At noon I walked into a dimly lit parlor along Luthuli Avenue. It was furnished with black velvet couches. I was accompanied by my two male colleagues but when we got to the main bar, we split up; ready for the business of the day.
I went straight to the counter and asked for a soda and secured a place in one of the corners posing as a client. Within a twinkle of an eye a man approached me. He was drunk despite the hour. He started caressing me but I flinched. I then heard one of the prostitutes yell at me “mtu akikatiwa aingie box si kujifanya hapa”. I wanted to throw up but I managed to steel my nerves. Negotiations went on and the man was willing to part with Sh 500 but I refused and told him it was very little. He kept on begging me and this time promised to give me Sh 1,000 but again I refused and he walked away. This scenario repeated itself several times with men offering to pay between 250 – 500 shillings but I refused. I told them that unless they paid a decent amount, I wouldn’t give in because I had had a busy night at a different brothel.
Mpasho Investigates Part 3: “Nafanya Umalaya Juu Sina Pesa ya Kuanza Biashara!” Prositute Confesses To Mpasho (AUDIO EVIDENCE)
All this became too much for me and after a while I decided to get some fresh air and went back to the entrance to chat with the security guard who seemed rather friendly. But all hell broke when one man came in and kissed me on the cheek telling me how attractive he found me and that he wanted to taste my goodies. He said he was willing to pay me any amount. Some of the prostitutes and female staff who were standing up the stairs came to me and hurled insults at me; “hakuna cha kusimama kwa mlango, kama hutaki kazi enda ama kama si hivyo panda juu kwa bar ununuliwe drinks ukunywe, wacha wanaume wakuje kuchagua hapa juu si kwa entrance, biashara haiendangi hivo.”
I felt intimidated but I doubled my resolve to stay and see my assignment through. So I made my way upstairs and secured a place in the smoking zone where I sat all alone worried about what might happen to me if they found out that I wasa journalist on assignment.
People came there to smoke with their ‘husbands’ and what I could hear was “huyu leo amekaukiwa, hajapata mtu” but that didn’t kill my spirit. I waited patiently and after everyone was gone, my ‘angel” came.
He was a policeman who was going back to Eldoret where he worked and decided to pass by as he “usually did.” He lit a cigarette, puffed and then invited me to sit next to him. I obliged.
Officer: Kwa wale wasichana nimeona wote nimekupenda wewe, ukinikubali nitakuoa.
Officer: Najua kwa siku we humake more than Sh 7,000, where do you stay and how much do you pay for rent?
Me: It depends with the season, at times I make less than that.
Officer: Unaeza kubali nikikuoa then I do everything for you so that uwache hii kazi though many prostitutes don’t like hard jobs.
Me: NO. I can’t quit my job, I like it soo much.
Officer: I will buy you a house, a car and promise to be true to you.
Me: (Laughing). You are not the first one to say that, I don’t believe you.
Officer: Okay. Naeeza kulipia rent every month but nikirudi Nairobi nisipatane mwanaume yeyeote kwa hio nyumba…
The conversation went on but after sometime, he decided to change to the main business of the day and asked me to have sex with him.
Officer: Nikon a mia tano si twende room.
Me: That’s very little.
Officer: Kwani wewe unacharge ngapi? The highest amount I have ever paid is Sh500, hawa wa hapa si expensive.
Me: for a person like you who works for the government, I always charge good cash minimum Sh 5,000.
I was running out of time and I had to say goodbye to the Utumishi kwa Wote officer but he wouldn’t let me go.
Officer: Twende shot moja tuu tutengeneze mtoto halafu nitakuoa….
Being my first time to visit a brothel I was speechless when I met young and beautiful Kenyan women selling their bodies for as low as Sh100 so as to earn a living. Despite the fact that prostitution is associated with dangerous diseases such as HIV/ AIDs, STDs people don’t really care about their lives and they throng brothels every minute in search of prostitutes. I hope Nairobi County government will take action on people who own brothels to save our women.
Keep it mpasho for the third part of this series where our investigative reporter negotiated with a prostitute in broad daylight.