These days, you are more likely to be robbed during the day than at night in most Nairobi estates.
And I’m not talking about house robberies or carjackings, the thieves pounce on you as you are going about your day-to-day activities.
You might have forgotten to buy something or you realize that your cooking oil ran out when you are about to cook.
So you decide to go rush to a nearby shop to get whatever you need.
Somewhere along the way, someone threatens you with a knife or a bonoko (fake gun) and asks you to surrender your phone or any other valuable.
You are left wondering whether someone had been waiting for you to leave the house. Truth is, you are a victim of a criminal gang who pose as garbage collectors. Nothing more.
You see, most estates in Nairobi have a specific day when garbage is collected, from Monday to Sunday. For example, the collectors could be in Hurligham today and in South B tomorrow.
Now, there’s a racket of criminals who are aware of this. So they make sure they are in your estate on the day that the collectors will come.
I don’t know if the last two paragraphs make sense, they sounded okay in my head.
Anyway, what normally happens is that you’ll carry the black garbage bag and leave it outside your apartment’s gate on your way to work.
The collectors usually come around noon in most estates and by this time, a gang of criminals has ransacked the garbage bag in search of goodies such as that faulty extension or water heater you thought you should get rid of.
But they don’t leave the estate immediately, they hang around and attack people, as they wait for the next ‘new’ garbage bag to ransack.
What is even more surprising is that these gangs have marked their boundaries in these estates.
If you are not a member of a particular gang, you should not be found harassing people or checking garbage bags in a certain ‘zone’.
So as you go about your day, be on the look out!
Comme ci, comme ça
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