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Kwale bar owners asked to respect the ban on operations

Kwale County Commissioner (CC) Karuku Ngumo has asked bar, pubs and nightclub owners in the region to abide by the order to shut their businesses due to the novel coronavirus (covid-19) outbreak.
Ngumo said the entertainment places were ordered closed as part of measures to stop the spread of coronavirus in the country and should be taken seriously.
The CC on Friday said the measures are aimed at curbing the spread of the pandemic by limiting gatherings and it should be accepted by all.
He said the business owners should take the government order seriously and not take chances as bars, clubs and other establishments present a very real risk to patrons and revelers.
“People should avoid pubs, bars, and other places and respect the stringent social distancing measures,” he said adding that the move intended to slow the spread of the virus.
The administrator said police ‘will not take any chances’ and will continue enforcing the shutdowns to help mitigate the spread of the virus in the county.
He said people should take precautions to stop community spread.
“The government has not changed its position on closing entertainment spots and business owners should respect that and not take chances,” he said.
His comments come after a 23-year-old bartender died on Wednesday night in unclear circumstances with relatives blaming the police for his death.
Erick Nthenge, a bartender at a popular bar in Ukunda Township in Msambweni sub-county allegedly died after he was assaulted by police officers enforcing the night curfew.
A relative Lydia Wanjiru said that the victim met his death after police officers on night patrol burst into the bar to disperse patrons and revelers.
Ngumo denied allegations that the deceased died as a result of severe police beating but said he died after he was trampled on by the customers fleeing the police dragnet.
A human rights activist with Muslims for Human Rights (Muhuri) Francis Ouma accused the police of cover-up by claiming they found the body ‘alongside the road’.
He said Muhuri has since recorded the death at the Diani police station under OB number 2/2/4/2020 and that they are awaiting postmortem results before pressing murder charges against the police officers involved in the bar raid.
By Hussein Abdullahi

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