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PoliticsKisumu Open For Business After Raila’s Call For Cessation Of Protests

Kisumu Open For Business After Raila’s Call For Cessation Of Protests

Schools that had cancelled classes were recalled Sunday night as it became apparent that demonstrations had been put on hold.

The lakeside city has witnessed the worst destruction of property caused by protestors since the start of demonstrations.

As others welcomed the move, while some saw it as a trap for Odinga.

“President Ruto talks about bipartisan approach through Parliament, while Raila calls it dialogue,” said James Ochieng, a resident of Obunga slums.

Ochieng said Odinga lacks numbers in Parliament and would not succeed in pushing his agenda.

However, a majority said the move will enable Kisumu to, once again, recover from destruction witnessed every election cycle.

Jane Auma, who sells groceries in Lolwe estate, said the demonstrations had crippled her small business.

Noting that a lasting peace is found in the country, Auma said: “Where there’s no peace, their is no economy”.

She noted that it was hard to get groceries since Kisumu only consumes and most suppliers feared the demonstration.

“We were running out of stock and we feared this week things would move from bad to worse, but thank God our leaders spoke,” she added.

A resident, Dickens Wasonga said most of the youths who are against the moves made by President Ruto and Azimio leader Raila are looters.

“They really benefited from these demonstrations and are now feeling bad that it’s coming to an end,” said Wasonga.

Chaotic demos

There were two sets of demonstrations in Kisumu.

The first demonstration called by Raila would start at 10 o’clock and ends up at noon.

Thereafter, a team of young people would kick off chaotic protests engaging police officers in running battles, putting roadblocks and breaking into stores while carting away goods.

As darkness sets in, they loot from residents returning to their houses, for every passage at roadblocks, a fee must be paid, sometimes snatching phones of those who fail to pay.

Kondele, the epicenter of streets demonstrations in Kisumu, was among the hardest hit areas in the lakeside city.

A lorry transporter, George Kilion, who couldn’t quantify his losses said he missed business opportunities during the protests.

“This truck here was bought on loan last year, it should repay itself, but in a week we barely worked, it was sickening to say the least,” said Kilion.

Just like other business people, Kilion said it was a Sunday of its own when the two protagonists backed down and settled on discussing the issues for a possible solution.


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