AirBnB operators in Kisumu City have been asked to register and secure licenses for the businesses from the county government.
In a notice signed by Kisumu City Manager Abala Wanga, the short-time rental operators have been given 21 days to comply with the directive.
Wanga said the move targets to enhance security within the premises following an upsurge in the number of criminal activities within the establishments in Kisumu and other parts of the country.
All AirBnB operators in the city, he said, are required to register with the city management upon which they shall be issued with licenses to operate.
The registration process, he said, will provide comprehensive details about the properties encompassing location, capacity, amenities, and measures put in place to guarantee the security of visitors.
Wanga added that measures have been taken to safeguard the city’s vibrant hospitality industry as the county government moves to reposition Kisumu City as a destination of choice.
In December, he added that a group of young girls was enticed into an Airbnb party in the city where they were sexually abused after partaking in alcohol and drugs.
“It is disheartening to realize that Airbnb originally designed for family vacations and accommodation similar to hotels are being exploited for criminal activities, sexual orgies, and parties that put our young girls particularly those in colleges and universities at risk,” he said.
The new directives, he said have been formulated to protect the rights and interests of both guests within the Airbnb ecosystem.
Operators who fail to comply, he added, risk legal action and closure of their establishments.