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‘Space Lounge’ back in court to challenge revocation of licence

A popular city bar at the centre of a never-ending  noise pollution dispute has moved to court to challenge revocation of its business license.

Through lawyer Samuel Wanyanga, Space Lounge Bar & Grill, which is located along Ngong road in Nairobi, sued the Nairobi County government and  its Liquor Licensing Board.

In the case documents, its director John Gitonga claimed that he knew that his license had been revoked on October 27 following shared reports on social media that his business had failed to comply with the noise level directive.

According to Mr Gitonga, the closure of his business is ill-motivated as he was not notified.

He further argues that the noise pollution issue was a disguise as he suspects business rivalry to be playing a role in the matter.

IMPACT ASSESSMENT REPORT

He claimed that he was forced to withdraw a previous case that touched on the same issue after he agreed to have the matter resolved with an impact assessment report from the National Environment Management Authority (Nema).

The bar was first issued with a closure notice on February 9 after which the operator was asked to undertake the noise pollution audit report as well as comply with noise control regulations.

“We did sound proof our premises as per Nema’s requirements, which we believe were satisfactory as there have never been defects so far,” he said.

He claims that his license renewal was approved and the business permit expires in December yet the County government has purported to revoke it on similar grounds.

ABILITY TO PAY WORKERS

“I pray that this court protects his business from malicious interests of the sued parties and order them to restore his single business permit as well as the license he applied for,” Mr Wanyanga said.

Mr Gitonga alleges that the closure of his business will interfere with his ability to pay his over 240 workers including security guards and suppliers at a cost of at least two million shillings.

He wants the case considered as urgent and heard on a priority basis.