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Cyprian Is Nyakundi


Flawed Economics: How The Covid-19 Pandemic Is Exposing Kenyan Business Cartels

In the headlines, the last three weeks have been nothing other than the Corona Virus. Even Raila’s beloved BBI has been put in the back-burner, as the country grapples with the realities which lay ahead.

The dollar is rising to past 120 limits, the price of fuel is going down, tourism numbers are dwindling, and Central Bank has reduced the base lending rate. Everything seems to be working against the economies of this world, as the market re-adjusts to the realities of the day.

Every sector seems to be suffering, and even the Kenyatta family empire is said to have suffered a cumulative loss of 1.2 billion so far.

CAPTION: Uhuru’s family business is staring at a 1.2 Billion loss so far. We hope the delay in announcing a rescue package is not occasioned by them trying to figure out how to recover this loss from our taxes.

Surprisingly though, out of sheer witchcraft or extra-terrestrial powers, two sectors continue to “boom” despite what is obviously a catastrophe staring at them.

The hospitality and real-estate sectors have conspicuously continued wallowing in their delusions of grandeur, operating as if its business as usual.

Travellers who landed yesterday were shocked to hear that Boma Hotel, itself facing liquidation for debts incurred through the mismanagement and corruption of former Kenya Red Cross boss Abbas Gullet and Ginadin Kariuki, was charging a whopping $200/night for self-quarantining passengers.

What school of economics did Kenyan cartels attend? We have seen many instances where hotels would prefer to shut down than adjust their prices downwards, with offers and promotions which would entice clients.

We can all see that flights to the country have been blocked, meaning tourism in the country is more or less dead for the next three months, so why would hotels and airlines continue pegging their prices high, as if there are tourists from eutopia arriving?

On Facebook, Bonfire Safaris is pushing adverts of some remote tented camp in far-flung Laikipia at 13,000 per person and 26,000 for a couple. Which marijuana are these people smoking? And do the same companies expect Government to offer favourable bail-out terms to them, yet they clearly want to stay out of business?

SICK! A tented camp in the middle of nowhere in Laikipia is charging rates as if this is high season in the pre-Covid era.

Meanwhile, real-estate cartels have gone full throttle, hoping to get clients at the delusional price of 16 million for an apartment in Kilimani. Are these people hallucinating?

If real estate cartels in Nairobi relied on foreign buyers from South Sudan and Somalia who launder their proceeds of crime by buying apartments here, do they imagine that the same in-flows will be forthcoming in light of this global pandemic?

In light of the debate on a rescue package by the government including tax incentives, we propose that the tourism/hospitality industry plus the real estate sectors be overlooked because they clearly have enough cash reserves to sustain them during this dark period.

RUBBISH! In the midst of a pandemic, real estate conmen are still basking in their delusions of grandeur.

If Uhuru doesn’t want chaos and anarchy in the form of looting and civil war in the country, he must prioritize incentives to the food sector, by zero-rating all food imports, subsidizing agriculture and flooding those industries with cheap loans.

The price of basic commodities must go down by 75% if he is to survive this period without any hitch.

Don’t say we didn’t warn you!

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