Lamu Old Town Bans Boda Bodas to Preserve World Heritage Site

  • Lamu Old Town has banned all types of boda-bodas from operating within its streets following a consultative forum held together with the county government of Lamu.

    The close to 150 riders have been stopped from conducting business in the central business district of the town and warned that they would be arrested on sight.

    The move, authorities explained, will ensure that the town is preserved as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

    Lamu County Trade, Tourism and Industrialisation Executive Dismas Mwasambu clarified that the riders would be allowed only to ferry passengers around the outskirts of the town.

    [caption caption="Boda boda operators docked at a shed waiting for customers in one of the populous towns in Kenya"][/caption]

    The county official explained that the consultative forum involving various stakeholders had seen a need to keep out all aspects of modernity out of the town.

    He further added that only an ambulance, a garbage collection truck and a fire engine would be allowed into the town.

    "The number of automobiles operating in the Lamu Old Town has grown immensely. This is something which is raising fears on the part of the county government.

    "That’s why we have met and decided that boda-bodas will only be allowed to operate in the outskirts of Lamu Town and not at the Old Town centre.

    "We have agreed that those found operating within Lamu Old Town will be arrested and fined heavily. We will even ensure licenses of those breaching the new rule are confiscated," the CEC noted.

    The administrator further conveyed that plans were underway to lay a ring road around the town that will act as a clear boundary. 

    [caption caption="Picturesque view of Lamu Old Town from the seafront. The town was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2001"][/caption]