Life in Nairobi seem to have come to a standstill. The busy commercial, tusker, accra and Ambassadeur areas look like ghost towns.
There are police officers, some in full military regalia and some on horseback in all corners of Nairobi. Public transport is absolutely paralyzed. The military is said to be on high alert and helicopters can be seen overflying important state institutions, like JKI Airport, KBC Studios, State House and the Department of Defence HQS in Milimani area. It is apparent that the security activities are being conducted by someone much higher than the Police Commissioner and that the ousted Kiambaa MP Njega Karume is sitting in the Defence Council meeting as the Minister of State for Defence.
Major supermarkets like Nakumatt, Uchumi and Tuskys are all closed for business, and only Uchumi Hyper at Sarit Centre is open for business - through half opened doors. This blogger just visited this supermarket and spoke to shoppers who have driven all the way from Limuru, Athi River and Embakasi. TV footage showed supermarkets in Kisumu being looted. Some reports said that Standard Chartered bank was invaded by demonstrators in Kisumu and bank tellers relieved of their till contents. The strong room thankfully, was not accessed.
As I type these lines (13h00 local time) the business community lead by industrialist Manu Chandaria has read a statement calling on political leaders to accept the results when they are announced by ECK. They are concerned about looting and violence particularly what damage this could cause to the tourism industry. Schools are due to re-open in one week and skirmishes will only hurt Kenyan children, they say. Business community say country is losing a whopping 2 billion Kenya shillings each day that the election impasse takes.
My opinion is democracy comes at a price. And this blogger also hopes that President Kibaki is reading this blog, and Derek - who say he is wired to PNU - will get some of the words expressed in this blog to the pwers that be in PNU.
Sources are telling this blogger that ECK commissioners have disagreed on the way forward. It is now 18 hours since they went in and although the counting is just about done, the Chairman has refused to be arm-twisted into making fraudulent declarations.