#StopArrestingDJs movement on the rise in Kenya after arrests
A #StopArrestingDJs movement is taking place in Kenya.
A weekend of arrests of Kenyan DJs saw rise to a social media campaign that managed to free at least two DJs under attack by authorities.
On Friday several nightclubs in Nairobi were raided by officers claiming to be from the National Environmental Management Authority (NEMA).
The premise was noise pollution and they arrested DJs as well as confiscating equipment.
It didn’t end there as Saturday saw similar raids where DJ Riggz and DJ Tremor were also arrested.
The social media campaign message read:
“Every weekend, DJs from all over Nairobi are arrested while trying to make a living and put food on their tables the best way they know how.”
Make some noise!
Although the raiding team claims to represent NEMA, NEMA heavily denies this.
What’s really strange yet unsurprising is that instead of arresting club owners they go for vulnerable young DJs who are then blackmailed and extorted for amounts ranging between 30k and 200k, with failure to comply landing them in a jail cell.
One DJ who wishes not to be named confirms the incident and had his own experience when confronting the arresting officers to show him proof of the alleged sound pollution.
“When they realised I was asking too many questions they chased me away. They then moved my colleagues to Central Police Station and I followed them there. When we got to the station, they told the police not to let me in so I was stopped at the gate.”
Nairobi senator Johnson Sakaja, a former music maker himself showed support:
“Sorry about this. I’ve taken up this matter. DJs are trying to eke out an honest living. If there’s a problem with the establishment, arrest the owner, not the deejay. I’m bringing together the relevant institutions including @NemaKenya to make sure they all #StopArrestingDJs”
This is a scary happening as many of our own South African house maestros play a lot of gigs in Kenya.
Give rise to the #StopArrestingDJs movement and let’s keep our DJs behind the decks and not behind bars.