It’s a season of harvest for tea farmers and twilight girls who have started flocking tea growing areas of Gatundu, Kiambu county days after the release of this year’s bonuses.
The girls can easily be seen at shopping centres in the tea zones of Gakoe, Gituamba, Kamwangi and Mataara regions.
Wearing tight jeans or short miniskirts and showing off smooth faces and perfectly oiled limbs, the girls easily attract every man around – from schoolboys to pastors.
But the prostitutes are not keen on idle villagers; they know how to identify moneyed prey. Owners of tea farms are the prime targets of the syndicate that has started reaping the fruits of poor farmers who have toiled all year to make ends meet.
According to residents of Gatundu North, rooms in village shopping centres and a few bar premises have been converted into temporary brothels at short notice. The ladies of the night pay for the rooms at much higher rates than local businessmen.
Led by Abednego Njoroge, a local youth, residents claim that fathers have been leaving home for weeks to meet their temporal wives only to return home empty handed.
Mataara Full Gospel church pastor Evan Mwangi Kanyi has described the call girls as smooth operators who do not make their prey suspicious and who are often educated enough to understand and manipulate the eldery farmers.
He advised tea growers to be wary and remember their families’ needs during the festive season and the looming January 2019 school fees, among other developments awaiting them.
Njoroge has threatened to mobilise youth to conduct raids in bars, ‘fishy hotels’ and streets at night to flash out the whores. He called on families to incorporate two bank signatories in tea payments to avert financial ruin.
Police have been carrying swoops to arrest the prostitutes but set them free almost immediately. Residents want police officers to intensify the impromptu raids, adding religious leaders to help tame the vice.
“We will work with police to thwart the missions of the shiny ladies. We will conduct raids together because we cannot allow them to enjoy what we have grappled to get for a whole year,” added Njoroge.