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Top 10 Most Dangerous Areas in Nairobi, Kenya

Updated on October 24, 2014

Nairobi has the notorious reputation for being a haven of some of the most dangerous criminals in the world. Although things have improved over the years, there are still pockets of crimes spread around the city. These are most dangerous areas of Nairobi that you should avoid at all costs.

Nairobi City
Nairobi City | Source

At the outset I must say that Nairobi is one of the most beautiful cities to live and work in. The people are the friendliest you will ever meet anywhere in the world. Like any other city, there are many social problems that lead to extreme poverty and unemployment.

This has led to the sprouting of informal settlements all around the city. The large concentration of populations in these settlements has become a breeding ground for all sorts of crimes and illegal activities from gun running and prostitution to murder.

Inaccessibility of these areas and the fact that they are large reservoirs of votes for the political class has made policing them quite a challenge.

The following are the 15 most dangerous areas of Nairobi in terms of severity of the crimes. You should always be careful if you venture in these areas or just avoid them altogether:

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Kayole

The biggest threat to your security in this part of Nairobi is a gang of boys known as the “Gaza Boys”. This criminal gang of underage criminals is known to waylay people are relieving them of their belongings.

The gang, composed of boys aged between 14 -17 years of age, operates with impunity and has been known to carry guns. They mostly target people alighting from public transport at night and many residents are so afraid of them that they fear reporting them to the police.

If you have to visit the Kayole area for whatever reason, make sure it is in the day and in populated areas. Be always aware of your surroundings and carry as few valuables as possible.

Kayole
Kayole | Source

Kibera

Kibera is a very large area composed of many villages of informal settlements. While there are many villages within the slum that are safe to visit, some are no go areas that must be avoided especially at night.

The level of unemployment in this slum has resulted in many youths who have no source of regular income.

As a result, many have joined criminal gangs that wreak havoc all over the city. The crimes that are prevalent in Kibera slums include muggings, rapes and murders.

Kibera Slum
Kibera Slum

Lunga Lunga Slums

Located on the eastern part of Nairobi, this is one of the most dangerous places. Among the crimes that have been consistently reported in this slum include murder and rape (especially of underage children).

There have also been incidents of motorists been carjacked at night as they approach the slums. In fact, only a few months ago a motorists was shot and killed as he tried to resist carjackers in the Lunga Lunga slum area.

Many residents seem to have given in to the criminal gangs in the area as they do not report crimes for fear of recriminations.

Jericho

Though not a slum, Jericho is a low cost estate within the Eastlands area of Nairobi that has been known for small crimes, mainly muggings. The main problem in this estate is the high rate of unemployment and the lack of economic activity.

Most of the hardened criminals in the country are originally from Jericho were they start with small crimes and graduate as they interact with the system.

Jericho is away from the normal routes someone can take when they are touring the city and there is a very low chance of going there.

Soweto

Soweto is a village within the larger Kibera informal settlement that is notorious as a den for the most dangerous criminals in Nairobi. Apart from the murders, rapes, muggings, kidnapping and carjacking that is prevalent, the area is also known for gun running and dealing in drugs and illicit drugs.

Mukuru Kwa Reuben

Home to almost 50,000 people, this slum settlement is located about eight kilometres north of Nairobi’s Central Business District (CBD). Due to congested nature of the slum which has very few access roads, it has become the hiding place for criminals.

Many of the criminals find a safe haven in the slums as they know that it is almost impossible for the authorities to venture deep within the settlement.

Kariokor

The settlement near Kariokor estate is just a few kilometres from the CBD and serves as a convenient hiding place for criminals. Due to their closeness to the CBD, the slums in these areas are also hiding places for stolen goods which get safe custody here.

Many small-scale businessmen also come from the area and it is here that they seek refuge when there are skirmishes with municipal authorities. It is during this fights that you should not be in the vicinity of the area as the county authorities are indiscriminate as they chase away hawkers from the CBD.

Mlango Kubwa

This area is known for carjacking and snatching of valuables from motor vehicles. When around this slums, make sure that your windows are up lest you lose such valuables as your mobile phones and laptops.

There have also been incidents of the yanking off of side mirrors. This is normally done by street kids who then sell the spares to brokers in the surrounding slums.

The places mentioned above are the most dangerous but are not the only areas experiencing crime in Nairobi. In fact, upmarket areas like Westlands, Lavington, Runda and Karen have also seen their fair share of crime.

These areas experience mostly carjacking, murders and some house break-ins. Overall however, the situation in Nairobi is getting better and figures released by the police show a decrease in the year-to-year crime statistics.

This decrease can be attributed to increased investment in the security sector by the government. It is also an indication that the fight against terrorist activities is also having a positive impact on the reduction of "normal" crimes in the country.

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    • gitachud profile image

      David Gitachu 17 months ago from Nairobi, Kenya

      The Gaza boys are a real menace

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