Broadlight Muggings in Nairobi: Streets to Avoid

  • A picture of a mugging incident.
    A picture of a mugging incident.
    File
  • Some streets in Nairobi have gained notoriety when it comes to daylight muggings.

    City residents have been taking to social media to narrate gripping ordeals at the hands of these robbers, who usually operate in groups of up to seven individuals.

    Areas highlighted as high-risk within the Kenyan capital include Tom Mboya Avenue's intersection with Kenneth Matiba Road (former Accra road) Bomb blast area, Aga khan Walk, Koja Stage and its environs, the space between Hilton Hotel and International Life House (Simba Street).

    Thugs operating in this area reportedly approach their target and initiate a casual conversation which is at times initiated through a friendly fist bump.

    Tom Mboya Statue
    Tom Mboya's statue around Kenya National Archives, Nairobi
    The Standard

    They then ask the unsuspecting victim to hand over their valuables or risk being daggered.

    Unfortunately, passersby often offer little to no help despite the fact that these muggings happen in broad daylight along the crowded streets.

    "Avoid those people pretending to be sick or causing chaos in a matatu. Chaos creates a chance to steal. If they want to puke on you then let them do it but don’t move for them, esp if on a window seat. How I lost my phone," a city resident warned.

    "Whenever you're in the CBD (Central Business District) especially Tom Mboya street in the evening, avoid the number 58 stage are, Tuskys to Quickmar. If possible, use the opposite side of the road," another added.

    The eyewitnesses and victims also detailed some of the tactics employed by the robbers. 

    For example, some are known to gang up on a victim by shouting 'Thief! Thief!" before going on to strip them of all their valuables.

    "There is a vicious group operating along Tom Mboya & Moi Avenue. The Tsunami Gang -comprised of Mlango Kubwa, Eastleigh & Huruma young and old lethal men! They work with lightning speed always know what they want in each victim," a Nairobi resident narrated.

    “Walking in CBD is an extreme sport the other day someone cut my handbag. How I didn’t feel them cut it is still a puzzle, upon reaching an M-Pesa it’s when I realized. This was along Ronald Ngala Street," yet another resident revealed.

    Hundreds of Kenyans went on to share their scary experiences and went on to tag the National Police Service in the conversation in a bid to generate a response from the authorities.

    They further called on the police to increase day and night patrols, along the busy streets.

    The Kenya 2020 Crime & Safety Report - produced in conjunction with the Regional Security Office at the U.S. Embassy in Nairobi, highlighted the Kenyan capital as a hotspot for muggings.

    "Most street crime involves multiple armed assailants. In some instances, large crowds of street criminals incite criminal activity, which has the potential to escalate into mob violence with little notice," reads an excerpt from the report.

    On March 14, police officers based in Nairobi announced the capture of seven robbery suspects accused of robbing mobile phones and tablets worth Ksh140,000 while armed with knives along Haile Selassie Avenue in broad daylight.

    The police also periodically publish a report listing all the known crime hotspots in Nairobi.

    A police officer carrying out a security operation
    A police officer carrying out a security operation
    File
    criminal armed steal violence suspect armed