Kenya is a small tourist paradise. The industry is among the three prime revenue earners for the country. It is small because Kenya is visited by 300,000 to 400,000 tourists per year while France receives between 70 to 80 millions annually.
The tourist industry grows, stalls and regain energy according to the politic stability of the country. Kenya, like other countries on the African continent, is definitely not a jewel of democracy, transparency and stability in many areas.
Kenya is a web of massive sophisticated corruptions performed by the government officials and their cronies.
Kenya has good hotels and restaurants to please tourists taste. It seems, as per a famous local food critique, the local food leaves a lot to desire and so much so that he quoted; “A Kenyan restaurant with a fine dining experience? Unfortunately not a single one.”
Nonetheless there is such a place in Nairobi where tourists flock to sample the roast meat to their belly’s wish. Of course, with the western flavor as the locals hardly frequent the place.
The Kenyan government trying to soar up with eagles in the sky has surpassed itself by enacting the most stringent and punitive laws in two areas: smoking and drinking.
Smoking is lethal in any dose and alcohol too when taken beyond a reasonable limit.
The history of smoking started in South America 5000 to 3000BC ago and alcohol in 8000BC in Persia and the Middle East.
The history for both, smoking and drinking, in Africa probably started from the time they became aware of a place called the West or Colonial time. For history sake what they were doing before, true or not, are of no importance as it may dilute the sense of martyrdom affecting the continent.
The Kenya anti-smoking bill is quite simple and short of banning the lucrative crop providing jobs to the 22,000 tobacco farmers it does please the extremist anti-smoking lobbyist and its highlights are:
- Cigarettes to be sold in packet of no less than 20 sticks.
- Cigarette advertisement is prohibited – fine US$7000 or 3 years in jail.
- Total ban on public places, public means inside your car or house with open windows at the risk of being slam with a maximum fine of $46,000 or three years in jail.
Beer is Kenyan preferred drink, so much so that a famous brand as for slogan “My beer My country”. Sadly, in the drinking area, including beer, the country has some punitive laws.
- The advertisement of any alcohol is banned.
- Alcohol sale is allowed on weekdays from 2pm until 11pm and 5pm to 11 pm on week ends. The maximum fine for drinking outside these hours is $375 or 6 months in jail term.
The drinking and smoking laws are so punitive that some Kenyans rather take the jail time as they are unable to raise the money for the fine. Well, that’s understandable considering the Gross National income per person is an average of $315 per person.
A fine of $375 for being caught drinking in a public establishment outside the prescribe hour is equal to almost one year and two months salary.
Not counted is the score of Kenyans who have lost their job upon the enactment of these laws. The Government could care less; they never have when it comes to the welfare of their citizen.
State sponsored laws made a grand Holiday season for the common Kenyan since it did apply during festive season. Some revelers are still languishing in prisons.
It is not a problem for foreigners take extra cash to pay the fine or ….have you heard of the country…….. it is such a nice exotic place to vacation and relax from the daily hustle bustle of life. Try it, it is safe and welcoming for tourists.
“Is it in Kenya?”