Poor Families Forced to Make Tough Choice Between “Social Distancing” and Sleeping Hungry

Mama Mboga

Social distancing has been recommended as one of the most effective ways of controlling the spread of Corona Virus and some countries have already enforced a lockdown to control the movement of people.

Kenya introduced a dusk-dawn curfew from Friday last week and most employees in the formal sector have also been working from home for the past two weeks.

Some sectors in the economy like the hospitality industry have been affected by COVID-19 disruption and some people have lost their jobs already while some have to contend with half salaries until further notice.

People in the informal sector are, however, perhaps the hardest hit by the turn of events. While those in the formal sector are able to adhere to the stay-home directive, the former relies on the day-to-day earnings to make ends meet and it’s nearly impossible to stay at home.

For Sarah Ndanu, a Mama mboga who sales groceries in Nairobi’s Umoja Estate, it’s business as usual as she  n narrates;

“Things are bad. I know the danger I’m putting myself in bu going to the market and coming back to open my “kibanda” but i have no choice. Rent and school fees have to be paid. I have sent my son to the village for the time being but for me and my husband, who is also in the jua kali sector, we have to hustle. We can only pray for God to help us.

Sarah’s situation is not isolated, it’s a similar scenario that Ben Mwangi, a matatu driver operating from Ruiru to Nairobi has to contend with.

Tunajua ungonjwa iko lakini sasa tutakaa nyumbani  watoto wakule nini? kazi lazima ieendelle tu “.We know the pandemic is real but what will our children eat.

Concerned citizens have asked the government to come up with ways to help the most vulnerable members of the community with food rations.

Borrowing  a leaf from Rwanda – Kagame announces measures to support the vulnerable

Last week, Rwandan President Paul Kagame announced a social protection plan aimed at supporting the vulnerable across the country during the lockdown period.

“Relevant institutions are working on a social protection plan, to support the most vulnerable in our community. We need to speed this up. The government will continue to do everything possible, to support Rwandans through this challenging time,” Kagame

A day after President Kagame’s announcement, Rwanda’s Ministry of Local Government announced that it will begin door to door provision of foodstuffs and groceries to vulnerable homes at village and sector level.

Rwanda is on a 14-day (2 weeks) complete lockdown, which started last weekend. The country also banned the unnecessary movement of residents, suspended all international flights and closed its borders,  in a bid to stem the spread of coronavirus.

Kenya coronavirus cases hit 42 as more test positive

coronavirus cases in Kenya as of Sunday 29th March had increased to 42 as more test positive with health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe warning that the country’s health facilities could soon be stretched as more cases are recorded.

“It is very likely and possible that going forward, our health facilities can be overrun and this is not a government issues alone. If in Italy and America with their facilities have been overran, is it hard to imagine this can happen in Kenya?” he said.

 

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Kenyans React to Dusk to Dawn Curfew

Kenya sets a dust to dawn curfew

President Uhuru Kenyatta on Wednesday announced a dusk to dawn curfew that will take effect on Friday 27th, in the latest measures taken by the government to control the movement of people and fight the spread of COVID-19.

According to the directive, no one other than those providing essential services, will be allowed outside from 7pm-5am. A Circular outlining the essential services that will be excluded from the curfew has since been issued.
The President also announced that one patient had recovered from COVID-19 and the number of coronavirus cases had rose to 28 after three more people tested positive.
“Social distancing is now our new way of life until such a time we will conquer this virus,” Uhuru stated.
Kenyans took to social media to express mixed reactions on the dusk to dawn curfew.
Kibet BenardKenyans we shall overcome I FULLY Support President Uhuru Kenyatta Directive for both economy and health parliament should move faster.The curfew will help eliminate this virus and after this,our Economy should pick up well.we are well Kenya let us be discipline #CurfewinKenya
 
Faith KE#EnforceTheBan On #CurfewinKenya most innocent kenyans are going to suffer. Police officers can even arrest you inside your house and claim you were outside loitering in the streets then demand a bribe. If you declined to do as per their demands…..Stay safe,we shall overcome.
 
Victor Mochere : according to President Uhuru Kenyatta, coronavirus only spreads at night. Who bewitched Kenyans?

 
Titledhk :The Problem with Africans is that, if they say nobody should go out, some people will go out just to see if anybody has gone out #CurfewinKenya #COVID19KE 
Tonny ™Lets think deep on this directive on #CurfewinKenya. how sensible is it? 95% kenyans work and interact btn 7am to 6pm. this is where the problem is and unless this issue is fully addressed,we are still beating around the bush .Lets face the facts. we need a #LockDownKenya

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Nakuru County CBD on Lock Down

Nakuru town on lock down

The County Government of Nakuru has placed a lock down in the city’s town, following resolutions by the County Emergency Response Committee, in an effort to control the spread of corona virus.

According to the County Commissioner, all markets will be closed and boba-boda riders and matatus barred from the city center.

The county has come up with alternative bus stops outside the town and passengers are advised to walk to town once they alight from the matatus.

TOUTING

Touting and idling at bus stages has also been banned and only the driver and the conductor will be allowed at the stage and they are expected to remain seated inside the vehicles as they await for passengers to board.

 Markets Closed

All traders at Nasha markets will now be moved to Afraha main stadium while wholesale and retail traders at wakulima market will be moved to Afraha Annex.

The County government has also said it will open with immediate effect Mwanga, Kiratina and teachers markets inorder to accommodate traders who operate on the roadsides within these areas.

 

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How Organizations Can help Employees Work Productively from Home

Tips for working remotely

By Winnie Kabintie

Over the last couple of weeks, organizations are encouraging their employees to work remotely from home, as one of the major ways of maintaining social distancing in an effort to control the spreading of COVID-19.

Working remotely has it’s fair of challenges including different time zones for organizations that have staff across different regions, which becomes quite a challenge for virtual meetings or even day-to-day engagement with staff, but whatever the case, Communication remains a key component on remote work.

In this article, we have compiled 5 tips to guide organizations on how they can get help their employees stay productive while working remotely.

  1. Develop an internal communications strategy – Effective Communication is crucial for a virtual work environment and especially in times of crisis.  It’s therefore very important for organizations to maintain clear, reliable and regular communication with staff members. This can be through emails, newsletters, phone calls, WhatsApp, etc.
  2. Have Regular video conferencing – Make use of virtual conferencing tools to schedule both formal and informal video conferencing with staff members. This will go along away in maintaining a connection with team members and also in getting updates on what they are working on. The informal video conferencing is also a good time for the management to show staff members that you care about their well being and will definitely go along way in boosting their morale.
  3.  Provide technical support – for employees to work productively from home, they need access to tools and gadgets to facilitate their work. This includes; Airtime, laptops and high-speed internet.  It’s therefore important for organizations to extend support on this area and also ensure that any expectations and deliverables from staff members are laid out with this knowledge in mind.
  4.  Be Flexible – While there is work to be done, the mental wellness of your employees is also just as crucial. Other than work, employees are also worried about the coronavirus epidemic and the challenges it has brought forth. They are concerned about their families and where to get basic supplies. Therefore, this is not the time to micro-manage them. It’s, therefore, important for organizations to maintain realistic expectations, set goals and trust that employees will do their job, without attempting to control what they are doing with their time by the hour.
  5. Give regular updates on the status of COVID-19 – While the government and relevant health organizations are providing updates on the status of CODID-19. It’s important for organizations to provide their own updates to their employees especially on relevant crucial information like travel and lockdown restrictions.

 

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Idris Elba’s Wife Sabrina Dhowre also Tests Positive for Covid-19

Idris Elba and wife tests positive for corona virus

Sabrina Dhowre, the wife of Hollywood sensation Idris Elba has tested positive for corona virus, a week after the actor revealed that he had been diagnosed with COVID-19.

Sabrina revealed her diagnosis with Oprah Winfrey on Saturday during a Facetime on Winfrey’s “Oprah Talks COVID-19,” .

According to Sabrina, she was with her husband Idris Elba when he went to get his test results and was therefore not surprised that she contacted the disease, days after he tested positive.

“I wanted to be with him,” she said. “That’s the instinct of a wife. You want to go and take care.”

Idris Elba had a few days earlier announced his diagnosis on social media and Sabrina was by his side, which had elicited plenty of criticism from concerned fans, who wondered why Sabrina was staying so close to Idris despite the diagnosis.

This morning I tested positive for Covid 19. I feel ok, I have no symptoms so far but have been isolated since I found out about my possible exposure to the virus. Stay home people and be pragmatic. I will keep you updated on how I’m doin. No panic” Idris posted on his Instagram and Twitter.

Harvey Weinstein Tests Positive for Corona Virus

Convicted Hollywood TV producer Harvey Weinstein, who is serving a prison sentence for sexual assault and rape, has also tested positive for COVID-19.

The former film studio Director, Harvey Weinstein was sentenced early this month for 23 years in prison for rape and sexual assault.

Harvey Weinstein Jailed for 23 Years in Rape Trial

 

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