Justice in Emergency

Every country across the world is grappling with the uncertainty of COVID-19.The impact that has been felt so far is overwhelming.The virus has shown the deep seated inequalities that exist especially with regards to responses.The world over, citizens are being told to stay home and those who have travelled are being quarantined , others are advised to self quarantine.

Sadly for poor people who live hand to mouth , quarantine though important in these times of emergency may not be an option .Some depend on menial jobs to raise families .Quarantine in a situation poverty can be a mirage .Schools and universities are closed , shops are being closed , markets are also being closed .Many poor Kenyans depend on petty trading in open air markets to put food on the table.In the midst of this crisis , unscrupulous people are taking advantage of citizenry to make a kill.The cost of transport has soared .

To prevent Corona , hygiene is key but in informal settlements of Nairobi such as Mathare, Kibra , Mukuru among others , taps run dry , families struggle to get basic soap.Water vendors have also taken advantage and are selling a jerry-can of water at between Kshs. 10-30 depending on where one buys the water from.

Governments should put in place preventive mechanisms that ensure vulnerable communities are not taken advantage during times of emergency.Emergence of diseases bring with them rights violations and suffering for already vulnerable communities .

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Government of Zambia is taking water to water problem areas and Markets and Shops are not closed but general cleaning is done every saturday and sunday. Handsanitizers are placed in all of these areas. This is for the sake of hand to mouth communities. John Masuwa

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