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Tension over, business as usual in Mombasa

Normal life seems to have returned to Mombasa after a busy and nervy week of the repeat presidential election. A random check by the People Daily yesterday established that majority of businesses that had closed down ahead of the polls have re-opened and are now operating normally.

At the CBD, stalls and shopping malls whose doors were shut before October 26 were now open with customers beginning to flock back. Similar scenarios were replicated at Mackinnon and Kongowea markets where traders had resumed normal business by Saturday. “Life has to move on, no matter what. We have families to feed and lives to live.

The two people competing will never come to your home to feed you if you are hungry, they will not come to pay your bills at any given time, so by all means, life has to go on and that is why we have to get back to business,” said Gerald Msamuli, a vegetable trader at Kongowea market.

Another trader, Jeremy Nyambane, appealed for peaceful coexistence among Kenyans after the repeat polls saying it is only through peace that businesses and economy can thrive. “Electioneering has always been unfriendly to our business environment.

In the past we have seen campaigns resulting to a nosedive in most businesses locally because of rising tension,” he said. Shopping malls, retail shops, salons and cafeterias which remained closed on Thursday and Friday were also back in full swing.

Mombasa’s CBD was a ghost City with doors to majority of business premises shut and streets largely vacated with virtually no traffic on the day of polling. “I passed by here Thursday but I was unable to do an important shopping for my family because all the shops were closed.

The markets were also closed and the items I was looking for could not be found in small kiosks. So I had to wait and hope things will get back to normal after the poll. I thank God that life is now continuing as normal,” said Karen Achieng’, a Mombasa resident.

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