Nairobi County has banned food hawking saying it poses health risks to residents.
Food hawkers sell samosas, fish, mutura, roasted maize, chips, omena among others, which are likely to cause a cholera outbreak at a time when the city is experiencing a water shortage due to drought.
County health executive Bernard Muia said the number of food hawkers who do not have proper licences has risen at an alarming rate.
Those found hawking food in open places will be arrested and prosecuted, he said.
He urged Nairobi residents to be aware that hawkers hide in public toilets whenever they spot county officials.
People eat all kinds of dirt, some of these hawkers hide in city toilets with food as they escape our officials,’’ said Dr Muia.
He warned health inspectors who have been soliciting bribes from food handlers that their days are numbered.
“The department of public health has been receiving bribes from the food handling business and turning a blind eye on unhygienic places,” said Dr Muia.
He said inspection of hotels will be carried out by officers who have been deployed to inspect them and ensure food safety.