Prostitutes operating in a bar in Thika have voiced their grievances against the demands of a nearby church to halt their services on Sundays.
The controversial issue has sparked tensions between the sex workers and the congregants of Wordfest Chapel International, led by Pastor Kelvin Macharia, who share the same building.
The prostitutes, who ply their trade at McGeorge bar located on Kwame Nkurumah Street, have labeled the church’s call for their closure as selfish.
According to one of the sex workers, Esther Karuga, gaining access to the church on Sundays becomes a significant challenge due to their suggestive appearance and behavior around the church premises.
To resolve the matter, Pastor Macharia took to social media, announcing that his church’s services would conclude by 7:00 AM, requesting the prostitutes to cease their operations until 12:00 PM, allowing his congregation a peaceful worship environment.
However, this arrangement has not been well-received by the women, who argue that the church knowingly established itself in the same building as their place of work.
The situation has prompted the church members to petition the Kiambu County government to prohibit the prostitutes from operating on Sundays to avoid disturbances during worship.
Conversely, the sex workers have defiantly asserted that they will resist any attempts to evict them, citing that some church members themselves patronize their services.
Deputy Commissioner of Thika West, Philomena Nzioki, acknowledged the issue and expressed that the root cause lies with the licensing of bars and the environment they foster.
She called upon those with objections about the presence of the sex workers in the building to formally lodge complaints.
As the dispute continues, it remains to be seen how the authorities will address this unique situation, where the boundaries between religious worship and commercial activities have become blurred in Thika.
Both parties seem determined to defend their interests, setting the stage for a potentially contentious resolution.