As people continue to enjoy the festive season, Nairobi looks like a ghost city.
Walking through the streets of Nairobi this festive season reminds one of those wonderful images of how the city was in the 1960s.
The streets in Nairobi look clean, silent and with fewer vehicles and people. It seems as though everyone who was in Nairobi before this festive season travelled “back home” and left the city to take care of itself.
Traditionally, festive seasons of Christmas and New Year come with goodies for business people in various major towns in Kenya. Businesses boom as people jostle to stock for the season.
For most businesses within the Nairobi Central Business District (CBD), this festive season has been one that spelt doom for their very existence. Unlike other seasons, this time round, there are no buyers.
Most businesses have remained closed because as Maina James, a business man who sells new phones on Mfangano Street, “there are no customers. It seems all our customers come from the village and for now, they have no business with the city.”
The matatu sector that operates within the city has also been affected. Most people plying within the city went “home” for Christmas celebrations. The few still on the road have not been able even to get enough customers for the day.
“It is like everyone decided to take a break this time round,” said Ahmed Adden, a PSV owner from Eastleigh, Nairobi.
The PSVs plying long distances have every reason to smile because business in booming and most of their vehicles are fully booked and the fares are more than tripled for some.
“All vehicles going to Kisumu have been fully booked to 30th of this month. Anyone wishing to travel to Kisumu using our buses has to do after 30th,” said one of of the operators at Western Express Coach.