How COVID-19 pandemic has impacted the lives of ordinary Kenyans

By Daniel Many | Tuesday, Apr 7th 2020 at 12:37
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The COVID-19 pandemic has changed how business is done. It has also changed the way people live and how they work. I spoke to a few Kenyans, and this is how the pandemic has affected their lives.

Name: John Isemeki Owino,

Lecturer, Moi University, Uasin Gishu County.

1. Where were you and what were you doing when you heard the news of Kenya announcing the first case of COVID-19?

I was at the University of Nairobi. I was with a few postgraduate colleagues doing some lab work.

2. Where are you presently?

Currently in Eldoret

3. How has the pandemic affected your lifestyle and your work?

We closed indefinitely, so no going to work. Work from home.

4 Are you satisfied with what the GOK is doing to contain the situation? If no, what workable solutions would you suggest for GOK?

The GoK is trying their best, but I think in case of a total lockdown, then the government should provide essential stuffs to its people. Wako na huduma number details zetu, I guess?

5. What lessons have you learnt from this pandemic so far?

Always be thankful to God for seeing another day.

6. If you survive this pandemic, what would you do differently?

Pray frequently

7. How is your daily routine like?

Wake up early, thank God for another day, mark students' papers, read, listen to music, and sleep.

Name: Dominic Kiplangat Bore

Student of economics, University of Kabianga, Kericho County.

1. Where were you and what were you doing when you heard of the news of Kenya announcing the first case of COVID-19?

I was on campus going about my course. In fact, we were remaining with about a month to put an end to the 8-4-4 system when the institution was closed indefinitely.

2. Where are you presently?

I am now at home in Bomet county, trying to stay safe.

3. Up until now, how has the pandemic affected your lifestyle and your work?

It has halted my academic progress. I am just lying idle at home, not knowing when I will graduate.

3. Are you satisfied with what the GOK is doing to contain the situation? If no, what workable solutions would you suggest for GOK?

I am dismayed by the manner in which the GOK is handling this issue. To be fair to them, they have tried to catch up with the situation, but they neither have the ability nor the will that will defeat this disease.

The first step in solving a problem is admitting that there is a problem, defining the problem, investigating what the problem is then embarking on the solution. They are still living in denial! They should own up and admit that they are the cause of this problem. They, in fact, imported coronavirus to us! From there they should organise their house!

Three scenarios;

1. The situation gets better or stays as it is

2. We go the Italy way

3. It gets worse than the Italian case

These plans should be handled meticulously, and everything required should be itemised. They probably need experts. Experts on governance.

The manner in which this quarantine is being implemented may result in the suspension of the rule of law by residents of some areas.

The economy will suffer. That's obvious. What the Gok can do is to minimize the shocks. That alone requires plans and counter plans as well as sacrifices and political will from their side. They should, for now, ensure that the income sources of microeconomic units remain operational because they are the producers and consumers. They should ban lay-offs, salary cuts, unpaid compulsory leaves, etc.

They should also ensure the availability and accessibility of food to all Kenyans. While availability can be easily done, accessibility will require a lot of work and plans.

Finally, they should come out clean and tell us the real figures, what they expect, and what we should expect ourselves. This will help us make the necessary plans, as well.

5. What lessons have you learnt from the pandemic so far?

Sometimes products from China are genuine. People should mind about themselves.

6. If you survive this pandemic, what would you do differently?

I will live one day at a time. I will mind people's interests more and choose better leaders.

7. What's your daily routine like?

Wake up, charge my phone, cook, chat on Facebook, eat, sleep, and the circle continues.

Name: Rodgers Otieno

Civil servant, Siaya County.

1. Where were you and what were you doing when you first heard the news of Kenya announcing the first Case of COVID-19?

In the office. And I had just resumed my job after 30 days leave.

2 Where are you presently?

Self-quarantining at my place.

3. Up until now, how has the pandemic affected your lifestyle and your work?

A lot has changed. I can't hang out with friends as I used to. I can't even go to work.

4 Are you satisfied with what the GOK is doing to contain the situation? If No, what workable solutions would you suggest for GOK?

Yes. The government is trying. The problem is that the public has taken the whole issue casually. Many are ignoring the measures put by the government.

5. What lessons have you learnt from the pandemic so far?

We need to be deliberate with life. Life is short. We are all vulnerable. Family is important. Never let friends occupy the place of family or time meant for the family.

6. If you survive this pandemic, what would you do differently?

I'll be deliberate with every life decision. No more with procrastination. It will be about making every moment count.

7. How is your daily routine like?

 I have maintained my waking up and sleeping time. Daily activities are not predetermined. I'm not a routine person. But in a day I have time for family, time for reading both classwork and general reading. I take a 30 minutes walk or ride daily. Listening to music but not TV. I'm not a TV person except for the news bulletin. Cooking has become my new passion.

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