Peckham nightclub closed in 2017 after teenager was stabbed to death outside faces losing licence over “deliberate and flagrant” Covid-19 breaches

By Grainne Cuffe, Local Democracy Reporter

A Peckham nightclub previously shut down after a teenager was stabbed to death outside could have its licence revoked for “deliberate and flagrant” breaches of Covid-19 rules.

Afrikiko Bar in the Old Kent Road had its licence to run a nightclub revoked for more than two years in September 2017, after the murder of 19-year-old Daniel Namanga.

Despite objections from the Metropolitan Police, Southwark council granted an application to allow it to run as a nightclub again in December last year.

But the force has again asked the council to review Afrikiko’s licence after it found “numerous” breaches of Covid-19 laws, including operating illegally as a nightclub.

Nightclubs have been banned from operating since the March lockdown began.

Following the review application, the committee agreed that the club’s licence should be suspended from October 2 until a full review is heard.

Southwark officers have found the venue in breach of its licence several times over the years.

According to the council’s chief enforcement officer, all the fire extinguishers at Afrikiko were found to be out-of-date on one inspection.

Police found on another visit that a six-month-old baby was among a crowd of 60 people downstairs with no safe way out if there was a fire.

But manager Daniel Dormer said he believed the business was being targeted unfairly, and said the incident in August when the baby was there was a private family birthday.

“You’re coming to a premises and saying that when you came there were 60 people, which is pure lies.

“That day it was my son’s birthday. We were finished, about to go, and they came knocking on the window (saying) they have a warrant to search.

“All the doors were shut, it was not public, it was family. The main thing I didn’t understand was my granddaughter was here – how can you run a nightclub with a granddaughter here?

“All the police want is the business out of the way. We’re not doing anything wrong. We’ve complied with Covid.”

In documents submitted to the council’s licensing department, police said Afrikiko “chose to operate in deliberate and flagrant breach of regulations and guidelines”.

During the August raid, police also said staff were “deliberately obstructive by physically preventing officers’ entry and intentionally or recklessly creating dangerous conditions whilst officers were investigating potential offences”.

Farhad Chowdhury, Southwark council’s principal enforcement officer, has also recommended revoking the licence.

On a visit in early September, he described as Mr Dormer as “obstructive”.

The owners are set to learn the venue’s fate at a Southwark licensing sub-committee today.

Pictured top: Afrikoko Bar in the Old Kent Road


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