Maandamano Day Two: Calm, slow business operations ahead of protests
As the anti-government protests enters day two, some parts of the country have remained calm with little activity witnessed and some businesses operating as usual. In other parts of the country, protesters ready for the day. These are updates as at 9.30am.
In Nairobi and Nakuru’s Central Business District, business has slowly resumed with slow traffic.
Normalcy has returned in Mombasa, with businesses operating as usual, and public transport as well. Police are patrolling the Central Business District.
A handful of locals went about their business in Homa Bay town, with some youths preparing for further protests.
Traffic was slow at the Brooke Trading Center in Kericho, with the main matatu stage having no passengers.
In Kisii town only a few traders graced the ever-busy Darahja Mbili Market.
The anti-riot police are on standby in Kitengela, Nairobi.
The Azimio leader, Raila Amolo Odinga, tweeted in the morning, urging Kenyans to take to the streets for the second day of protests.
“The voice of the people must be heard. Our peaceful protest continues. #MaandamanoWednesdayToFriday,” the tweet by the Azimio leader read.
On Wednesday, July 19, President Ruto expressed his willingness to engage in talks with the opposition on matters affecting Kenyans as long as they did not involve a handshake conversation.
“To engage us in talks (through Parliamentary leadership) on the issue they raised, but they chose to use demonstrations. They should use constitutional and legal avenues to address their grievances, if any,” President Ruto said while commissioning the Kamugu project in Kericho.
The Interior and National Administration Cabinet Secretary, Kithure Kindiki, on Wednesday, July 19, said that more than 300 people had been arrested and charged with various offences including looting, malicious damage to property, arson, robbery with violence, and assaulting law enforcement officers, among others.
“The security agencies remain alert throughout and will increase the operational capabilities tomorrow and in the days ahead to ensure normalcy is maintained and the country does not slide into anarchy,” he emphasised.
Protests accompanied by various degrees of violence were reported in various parts of the country on Wednesday, including Nairobi, Mombasa, Kilifi, the Nyanza belt, Nakuru, Kisii, and parts of Western.
The Education Cabinet Secretary, Ezekiel Machogu, ordered the reopening of schools today, stating that the situations in Nairobi, Kisumu, and Mombasa had been contained and returned to normalcy.