Economy

Hotels stay closed over Kagwe rules

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Health Secretary Mutahi Kagwe. FILE PHOTO | NMG

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Summary

  • Many city hotels and restaurant owners are yet to take up the State’s offer allowing them to operate from 5am to 4pm, a spot check by the Business Daily shows.
  • The businesses which opt to resume operations are required to adhere to stringent social distance measures such as ban on buffet services and having their guests sit at least one metre apart, amid other requirements on social distancing.
  • As a prerequisite, Health Secretary Mutahi Kagwe announced Monday that owners of eateries also have to foot the cost of testing their employees for coronavirus before being allowed to reopen.

Many city hotels and restaurant owners are yet to take up the State’s offer allowing them to operate from 5am to 4pm, a spot check by the Business Daily shows.

The businesses which opt to resume operations are required to adhere to stringent social distance measures such as ban on buffet services and having their guests sit at least one metre apart, amid other requirements on social distancing.

As a prerequisite, Health Secretary Mutahi Kagwe announced Monday that owners of eateries also have to foot the cost of testing their employees for coronavirus before being allowed to reopen.

Majority of the eateries in Nairobi remained closed on the first day while the few that took up the challenge received only a small number of patrons.

In Western Kenya hospitality sector players expressed reservations over the new regulations saying they cannot sustain their operations under the stringent guidelines. Western Kenya Hospitality Leaders Association chairman Robinson Anyal raised concerns that most facilities can barely fulfil the requirements.

“Going by the current rate of Sh10,000 to test each person at a private facility, someone with more than 10 staff will have a challenge bearing the cost,” he said via phone.

Together with the cost of paying workers who will be recalled, he said most eateries might remain closed until normalcy resumes.