In a sweeping crackdown on illicit brews in Kirinyaga, thirty-five individuals, including police officers, have been apprehended.

This robust enforcement effort underscores the County Government's commitment to curbing the sale and manufacture of illegal alcohol within its jurisdiction.

Among those arrested is Josephine Karioko Muchira, proprietor of the Holiday Inn Pub in Kutus.

Muchira's establishment has been shuttered for its involvement in the production and distribution of illicit brew.

Authorities discovered over 100 litres of the illegal substance on the premises, bearing counterfeit Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS) and Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) stamps.

County Commissioner Hussein Allasow emphasized the seriousness of the situation, stating, "We have done an operation and I want to confirm that all bars are closed except for a few who want to play cat and mouse games."

He reiterated that bars would remain closed until the vetting process is completed, citing concerns over the presence of potentially harmful substances in circulation.

The crackdown extends beyond mere arrests and closures. Kirinyaga officials have initiated a comprehensive vetting exercise for all liquor outlets.

Allasow outlined the objectives of the operation, noting, "Ours is to make sure our people remain safe." He warned illegal brewers of impending consequences, affirming the authorities' determination to bring them to justice.

The vetting process commenced on Monday, with twenty ward multi-agency committees tasked with conducting physical inspections of alcoholic outlets.

Dennis Muciimi, County Executive Committee Member for Sports, Culture, and Social Services, assured bar owners of a fair and transparent assessment.

"We urge all alcoholic outlets owners to be physically present in their respective premises to pave the way for the verification exercise," he emphasized.

Bar owners are required to produce valid 2024 application receipts and 2023 liquor licenses for scrutiny.

Failure to comply with the vetting procedure will result in the presumption of business cessation.

As the crackdown intensifies and vetting procedures unfold, Kirinyaga County remains steadfast in its commitment to safeguarding public health and ensuring regulatory compliance within the alcohol industry.