Dirty secrets in City massage parlours

Man getting a massage in a spa. (Courtesy/iStockphoto)

The introduction of ‘happy ending’ in massage parlours spread in major towns.

For many years’ massage parlours were perceived to be relaxation spots for the affluent individuals in the city and major towns.

Such individuals, both men and women would find time mostly in the evening hours to check into the parlours charging arm and leg for to be kneaded by professionals dubbed masseurs.

With time, advertisements and small billboards started dotting leafy estates promising out this world experience massage and after services commonly referred as ‘happy ending’.

The term basically means such joints allow clients to have sex with masseuses or masseurs behind closed doors at an extra fee.

The introduction of happy endings in the parlous spread in major towns leading to the rise in sex dens camouflaged as massage parlours, even estates.

To up the game, some parlours now lure clients with a promise that the kneading is being dispensed by hot Ethiopian, Tanzanian and Ugandan girls among other incentives.

The trend shot up within no time leading to more joints not only in posh residential areas in towns but also in estates and other parts of the country, most of them promising a happy ending for clients.

But in a shocking twist, a court case that was recently concluded in Nairobi has unearthed what happens behind the closed doors of massage parlours.

In the case, a Ugandan woman had accused her employer of sex trafficking; apparently, she was invited to Nairobi in 2022 only to be turned into a sex slave.

Reportedly, the lady was not only used to lure other girls to work in a massage parlour in Ngara but also to lure other unsuspecting girls to the trade.

For many years, those living around assumed this was a massage parlour but the lady would realize that her job and those of other girls lured extended to quenching the sexual thirst of male clients who used to flock to the den.

In her confession, the lady claimed that her employer made millions from the trade which involved sleeping with at least two men in a day.

The woman in question and others were never paid Sh10,000 monthly salaries that they had been promised by the employer to work as masseuses.

The person behind the business was jailed for 20 years or a fine of Sh20 million but hundreds of such parlours still advertise for massage services by foreign girls.

This begs the question of how the girls end up in the country and in the hands of greedy agents out to make millions in sex dens.

Security analyst Richard Tuta agrees that most of the massage parlours in the city and other parts of the country are sex dens in disguise.

At the same time, he argues that foreign girls are lured into the trade because they are running away from problems in their countries and they can do anything for their survival in Kenya.

He explains that this exposes them to abuse because they don’t have alternatives and the fact that they are here illegally is used to blackmail them.

“They can’t report cases of abuse because there is still the principle of not seeking justice with dirty hands,” he added.

The expert argues that for a long time, there is how we profile criminals from a gender perspective, stating that rarely people associate feminism with criminality thus the level of checks conducted on male conducted on males checking on the country are different.

“Our security tends to deal with what but not who, that is why if you have a priest collar the level of vetting goes down, if you are a female the level of vetting goes, it is easy for female criminals to breach security protocols as opposed to male criminals,” he explained.

Locally, some young ladies have been going through harrowing experiences at the hands of clients.

Take the case of a young lady who shared a shocking experience she recently underwent at the hands of a man who invited her for a massage session at his rented home along Thika road.

In her confession, the lady claimed that she had been doing laundry services but needed something to supplement her earnings, forcing her to try massage services.

On the material day, she received a call from the client who directed her to his house.

When she arrived she found two men in the house in the afternoon hours enjoying alcoholic drinks which they prodded her to drink but she refused.

After some minutes, one of the men stepped out allowing her and the man who had called her to proceed to the bedroom for kneading exercise which he had agreed to pay handsomely.

Once she was done, the lady claimed the man requested a happy ending promising to add her Sh2,500.

“I agreed because I needed money but when he was done the man pretended that he had received a call claiming that there was an emergency promising to come back,” she confessed.

After waiting for a while in the bedroom, she decided to step out to the sitting room where she found the other who was in the company of her client sitting alone.

After about half an hour of waiting for the man to return and pay her, the lady gave up after her attempts to call him turned futile. He had switched off his phone.

The other man she found in the house informed her that her client had been ‘arrested’ and might not come back anytime soon; it dawned on her she had been duped.

Such cases go unreported for fear of victimization giving culprits more time to plan for more tricks.

Apart from massage parlours, women who survive in sex trade argue that some of them are being abused by clients.

This is according to Fellister Abdalla who leads an organization dubbed KESWA that protects women in the hospitality trade.

“Apart from massage parlours, most of the hookers have shifted online but those looking for those services are strangers who violate our rights, in fact some women are killed in the process,”

She argues that if sex-work was not criminalized it would be hard to hear cases of trafficking in the county citing that many trafficking cuts across.

“Trafficking happens in two ways, Kenyans are also trafficked to other parts of the country thus we should deal with this problem, agents who do that should face the law,” she added.


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