Police in Rachuonyo North, Homa Bay County, have seized 23,000 litres of illicit brew chang’aa hidden on an artificial island on Lake Victoria.
Police uncovered the syndicate of brewers who use the floating hyacinth to cover up their activities near Kendu Bay pier.
The officers, acting on the intel of locals, raided the spot and impounded the brew. Kendu Beach Management Unit Chairman Ibrahim Kasera told Nation that a similar island was recently destroyed in Lake Victoria by security officers.
“The lake is infested with water hyacinth and hippo grass. While fishermen keep away from the weed to avoid getting stuck, the criminals use the weed to conceal chang’aa brewing business,” said Mr Kasera.
Mr Kasera said criminals spread polythene on the hyacinth to create the surface.
“Dry soil is then transported using boats and spread on the polythene to create a firm surface,” Mr Kasera said.
The artificial island looks like an ordinary bush from the lake shore and it is hard for someone to notice activities in the 2500 square metres artificial island.
The operation was carried out by a multi-agency team of Kenya Coast Guard Services (KCGS) and the police. Homa Bay County Police Commander Esther Seroney said the brewers escaped as investigations commence.
Sam Oduor is the editor-in-chief at the Western Kenya Times who leverages the power of the Internet in telling stories that shape opinions.