Hotels in Tharaka-Nithi counting losses as food sale banned over cholera outbreak

Last week, county Health Executive Magdalene Njeru closed all hotels over the outbreak.

Thursday February 11 2016

One of the closed hotels at Kibunga market in

One of the closed hotels at Kibunga market in Tharaka-Nithi County. Hotel owners in Tharaka North and South sub-counties are counting loses after the county government banned food selling following a cholera outbreak. PHOTO | ALEX NJERU | NATION 

By ALEX NJERU
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Hotel owners in Tharaka-Nithi County are counting losses after the county government banned selling of food following a cholera outbreak.

Two people have so far died and more than 200 treated after developing cholera symptoms.

Some of the hotel owners have been forced to seek other income generating projects as their premises remain closed.

But having used all his savings to start a hotel business, Mr Kathoga Muriuki, who owns an eatery at Kibunga market has nothing else to do but wait for the county government to call off the ban.

Mr Muriuki, however, said it was important that they are trained on how to improve health standards for their businesses to continue operating.

“The ban curbs the spread of the disease but it has made us jobless and hopeless,” said Mr Muriuki.

Mr David Gituma, an hotelier said that many youth working as waiters had been rendered jobless.

“The hotel industry in the Tharaka North and South sub-counties employs thousands of people. Now they have no jobs,” said Mr Gituma.

Last week, County Health Executive Magdalene Njeru closed all hotels saying the ban will continue until the area is declared cholera-free.

The county is struggling to contain the outbreak even as nurses started a strike on Monday over unpaid allowances.

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