Kenya’s National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) has estimated that 1.7 million people have lost their jobs due to President Uhuru Kenyatta’s decision to put the country on lockdown from March to June 2020.

About 604 firms sent workers home between March and August 2020 due to the coronavirus fallout, says the Federation of Kenya Employers.

Kenya, like many other countries in Africa and around the world, followed World Health Organization (WHO) safety guidelines on Coronavirus pandemic including putting the country on lockdown and prohibiting public gatherings in order to limit the spread of the virus.

This information by KNBS is proving that such a decision was a sweet-bitter because as much as it probably helped in controlling the virus, it has also brought about unpleasant outcomes like loss of jobs, the decline in revenues from tourism and other economic sectors.

Understandably, 1.7 million people losing their jobs means 1.7 million families are in trouble. The big question now among Kenyans is how the government will restore these jobs.

As of now, the government has started to ease restrictions on COVID-19 safety guidelines. Schools and colleges reopened earlier than the scheduled time in 2021. The 12-hour curfew is no longer in firm practice. Just to mention a few.

Tanzania, the closest East African country to Kenya, did not shut down its cities fearing the decision would affect its economy and that of the neighbouring countries including Kenya itself, since they dependently import food and services from the country.


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