Kenya: Bars to Remain Closed 5pm to 6am During National Census - Matiangi

21 August 2019

Nairobi — Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiangi now says bars will be closed on Saturday and Sunday during the national census.

Matiangi stated that the closure will take effect from 5pm to 6am on both Saturday and Sunday as Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) officials conduct the census.

He urged the public to be at their residences so that everything can proceed smoothly.

"So please be available in your house on Saturday to ensure you are counted. That is why we will have all the social places especially bars closed from 5pm so that we give everyone an ample time to be home by 6pm when enumerators will be coming to count you," said Matiangi on Wednesday.

He further reiterated that there will be no public holiday on Monday after the exercise.

"Do not be the kind of people who look for the small opportunities to go and have fun. Why do you need a public holiday, yet we will be counting from Saturday night from 6 o'clock and on Sunday same time? Since independence, we have never had a holiday during census," he added.

The Interior CS was speaking in Embu.

Matiangi's declarations a comes few days after Machakos Governor Alfred Mutua issued a similar directive within the county.

He ordered the closure of entertainment joints to enable accurate collection of data during the census.

Mutua said that the closure would allow families to be together during that crucial national exercise.

"Bars and joints that predominantly sell alcohol or engage in entertainment to be closed from 6am on August 24 until 6pm on August 25," Mutua said on Monday.

KNBS will for the first time conduct a paperless census which will also see intersex persons enumerated, following the introduction of a third gender marker.

The country will be joining nations that have started the process adopting intersex identity into law, Germany having adopted the same in 2018 giving people an opportunity to register as intersex on birth certificates and passports.

The population of intersex persons is currently estimated at about 700,000 persons.

Previously, KNBS only listed people as either male or female.

The new marker was introduced by the bureau in December last year, after prolonged consultations.

Intersex persons say they've been denied basic services like registering a bank account and are forced to decide between being male and female while registering.

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