Tacos bar, that was Nairobi’s unofficial ‘official’ gay bar is reported to have closed down and been sold after a boycott by gay patrons when the management barred LGBT members several months ago.
The bar, that has long been a favorite for the LGBT community, is reputed to have suffered losses when the management ordered that no perceived or known LGBT person should enter it despite high sales.
The unconfirmed move came after it was reported the owner of the bar found two men kissing in the men’s room of the establishment.
It is also reported that the club had signed a deal with a local TV show where participants of the show would routinely entertain at the bar and that the owner decided to bar homosexuals to protect the image of the club.
Tacos is now closed. A padlock and a chain is now firmly in place at the gate. The bar was a favorite with LGBT persons and weekends found the balcony packed.
A waiter who talked to Identity Kenya on condition of anonymity said that the management could not sustain the bar on account of the losses they have suffered since the order to bar gay patrons was issued.
‘It has been down since then. Losses began to appear and the owner felt the pinch. He even asked us to contact key LGBT persons to tell them that we are welcome back but people refused. I think you gays had felt enough was enough and decided not to come.’
LGBT members who talked to Identity Kenya said that they felt that Tacos was using them only when they felt like it and had no problem barring them but would call them back when losses began.
‘It was routine. We would not be allowed in by management. We would be harassed too. But then after some time, we would go back. It became a routine. We got tired and we said enough is enough. Members felt that we can show Tacos we have the power and I think we made a point,’ said Irene Onyango, a lesbian who used to frequent Tacos.
However, the order to bar gays, the several issued in the last three years, did not go down well with the community leading to calls for boycott.
The community moved to other bars in the CBD. This move, together with declining profits led to the management asking members back.
Reports say that the owner had also planned to hold a gay bash to woo LGBT clientele back but this did not materialize.
By Staff Writer
Source – Identity Kenya