Photos of a smartly-dressed man in a black suit and glasses standing along Limuru Road in Nairobi with a placard were widely shared on Thursday, August 6.
Wilfred Muturi Japheth, a driver with over 25 years of experience revealed to Kenyans.co.ke that he had been standing at the same spot for the past three days.
He disclosed that he had previously worked as a personal driver and for a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO), but was hard hit by the Covid-19 pandemic with his car being auctioned.
Muturi disclosed that his phone had been ringing off the hook for most of Thursday morning, among them four job offers which he received by noon.Driver Wilfred Muturi Japheth pictured on a road in Nairobi on August 6, 2020
Surprised that he was trending, Muturi explained that the move to stand on the street was nothing new to him as he secured a job in the exact same way, in 1998.
"I have been called by a lot of people. Some are journalists, some have driving jobs here and there I've gotten at least four of such, so what I can say is everything needs patience because this is my third day here.
"Some of the offers are short-term, in places which are a bit far like Kitengela and Karen Hardy. I live in Ruaka, I have to board about three different public transport vehicles to go there so I have already connected other drivers with those opportunities. I am still trying to see the what comes up," he disclosed.
He recounted that, in 1998, he stood in Lavington with a placard and secured a job, advising Kenyans to be smart and creative.
Muturi revealed that he opted to return to the street decades later after being frustrated in his search for a job during the global pandemic.
"I have sent those CV's until I have gotten tired. You have to ask yourself, who is hiring right now?" he stated.
He advised young Kenyans to avoid shortcuts in the search for a better life, maintaining that honest work always paid off.
"I think the big problem we have is that people want to be rich using shortcuts. So this is why people don't give 100% in what they are doing. If you are offering a service, you should take it seriously and even if you are employed, work as if it is your own organisation," he asserted.
Japheth's story brought to the fore grim statistics on unemployment, job losses and wage cuts that have hit the economy hard during the pandemic.
According to the government, at least 300,000 people have lost their jobs since the onset of the pandemic, affecting an estimated 3,000,000 livelihoods.
“Each and every person who has lost their job, directly or indirectly affects at least 10 other people,” Health CAS Rashid Aman explained in a briefing on May 30, 2020.File image of Kenyans pictured walking in the capital, Nairobi
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