In Summary
  • As police patrolled the densely populated estate, there were only a few onlookers near the roadblocks as well as countable vegetable and fruit vendors.
  • Although banks opened, there was little activity. Gulf African, Cooperative, Absa, KCB, Equity and SBM banks opened as a formality, with few or no customers.
  • At Suncity, a group of onlookers mobbed a person who attempted to photograph them as they resisted police requests to leave.

Most businesses remained closed in Nairobi's Eastleigh estate on Friday, following the government's cessation of movement order over rising cases of the coronavirus in the area.

As police patrolled the densely populated estate, there were only a few onlookers near the roadblocks as well as countable vegetable and fruit vendors.

Eastleigh coronavirus lockdown

A security officer mans one of the roadblocks on Second Avenue Eastleigh in Nairobi following a government order against movement into and out of the estate to curb the spread of the coronavirus. PHOTO | JEFF ANGOTE | NATION MEDIA GROUP

Most residents of Biafra, Sun City, Section Three, California, Pumwani and a section of Pangani remained indoors.

Along the busy First Avenue sections of Garage and Garissa Lodge Shopping Centre, all the shopping malls were shut.

BANKS

Although banks opened, there was little activity. Gulf African, Cooperative, Absa, KCB, Equity and SBM banks opened as a formality, with few or no customers.

A police officer in-charge of the roadblock at First Avenue, Juja Road junction said people were getting used to not going to Eastleigh.

“All malls are closed. I don’t understand why some people insist on wanting to go there. We have made it clear that no one leaves or goes to Eastleigh without valid reasons,” said the officer.

Eastleigh coronavirus lockdown

Security officers man one of the roadblocks on First Avenue in Eastleigh, Nairobi County, following a government order against movement into and out of the estate to curb the spread of the coronavirus. PHOTO | JEFF ANGOTE | NATION MEDIA GROUP

The officer said most people used the excuse of going to hospital and that his officers were examining each of those requests.

Those who had prior appointments with doctors or had serious medical cases are allowed to proceed.

Two other roadblocks were placed at California near Mpambe Dishes and Pumwani Maternity.

Eastleigh coronavirus lockdown

Security officers manning one of the roadblocks on First Avenue in Eastleigh, Nairobi, as part of efforts against the spread of Covid-19, check the details of a resident who wanted access to the area. PHOTO | JEFF ANGOTE | NATION MEDIA GROUP

MOB ATTACK

At Suncity, a group of onlookers mobbed a person who attempted to photograph them as they resisted police requests to leave.

At one point, the mob turned rowdy and stoned motorists.

Eastleigh Second Avenue roadblock

One of the roadblocks on Eastleigh Second Avenue in Nairobi as pictured on May 8, 2020 after the government's cessation of movement order to curb the spread of the Covid-19 coronavirus disease.. PHOTO | JEFF ANGOTE | NATION MEDIA GROUP

Some traders who opened their businesses complained of dwindling sales.

“I used to sell seven sacks of charcoals per day. Yesterday, I sold three quarters of a sack. Customers fear coming here. Even leaving my home to this place is a problem," said Mr John Gitonga, a charcoal seller at California.

"I thought this cessation was meant to restrict movement into and outside Eastleigh. Why are we subjected to same restrictions from within?”