Mass Exodus from Nairobi Intensifies Over Lockdown Fears

  • An image of country bus station
    Buses lined up at Country Bus station, Nairobi.
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  • Hundreds of Nairobi residents have started moving upcountry amid fears of a possible lockdown as Covid-19 cases continue to rise.

    The Council of Governors (CoG) has proposed a temporary lockdown that should extend to the Christmas period. This comes at a time when many Nairobians are starting to travel upcountry to spend time with family.

    Speaking to Kenyans.co.ke, an attendant from the Guardian bus company revealed that some routes are already fully booked from 13th to 28th December.

    An image of country bus station
    A file image of passengers scrambling to board a bus at Country Bus Station, Nairobi.
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    "There is an increase in bookings, especially to the Western part of the country. Routes to areas like Busia and Mumias are already fully booked from 13th to 28th December.

    "We are planning to have additional buses, but I cannot really give a timeline. We have a challenge in timing because buses can only operate during the day," explained the attendant.

    Various bus termini across Nairobi including Country Bus witnessed hundreds of people either booking or travelling upcountry. 

    The National Emergency Response Committee (NERC) is set to present its recommendations to President Uhuru Kenyatta on measures to adopt during the festive period to help contain the spread of Covid-19. 

    The committee is scheduled to meet on Monday, December 7, with the festive period being just around the corner. 

    The Governors want the President to enforce the cessation of movement in counties that have been reporting a soaring number of Covid-19 cases.

    Counties that have reported an increase in Covid-19 cases include Nairobi, Mombasa, Kiambu, Nakuru, Kajiado, Uasin Gishu, Busia, Machakos, Kisumu and Kilifi.

    Devolution Cabinet Secretary Eugene Wamalwa recently warned Kenyans pointing out that the move to upcountry is bound to enhance the spread of Covid-19.

    During the festive season, a number of Kenyans residing in major towns and cities often travel upcountry as they utilise the short break to spend time with relatives.

    Devolution Cabinet Secretary Eugene Wamalwa during the 14th Memorial Service of the late Vice President Michael Kijana Wamalwa held at his Milimani home in Kitale, Trans-nzoia County on August 23, 2017
    Devolution Cabinet Secretary Eugene Wamalwa during the 14th Memorial Service of the late Vice President Michael Kijana Wamalwa held at his Milimani home in Kitale, Trans-nzoia County on August 23, 2017
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