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The Kenya Private Sector Alliance (KEPSA) wants opposition leaders to desist from calling for the boycott of products and services from certain business brands.

The Alliance warned that such calls will hurt an economy primed for recovery and could lead to numerous job losses.
The lobby group said it’s rattled by unjustified attacks on economic drivers such as media, telecommunication and banking institutions that have been cited for consumer boycotts.

“Private sector players such as KCB Bank, Safaricom and the Star, directly and indirectly, employ thousands of politically neutral Kenyans from all walks of life, who must remain shielded from political distress. By a considerable measure, these organisations are also a barometer of our economic stability, and an attack on them is an affront to our national economic aspirations,” said KEPSA.

Recently, Azimio La Umoja One Kenya leader Raila Odinga asked the coalition’s supporters to boycott services and products from a number of top business brands.

Raila, who also called for bi-weekly protests, said that certain businesses have become enablers and facilitators of this brutal regime, alleging their affiliation to the ruling Kenya Kwanza administration.

The start of the protests this week saw looters and vandals wreak havoc on businesses, putting a damper on what should have been a peaceful march.

“We recognise that the right to assemble, picket and peacefully demonstrate is firmly entrenched in the Constitution of Kenya and the role these activities play in advocating for change. We recognize that picketing is an important tool for people to voice their concerns and grievances, and we believe in the fundamental right to peaceful assembly and peaceful protests,” said KEPSA.

Adding that demonstrations where property and lives are lost such as this week’s do not have any winner and we all stand to lose.

“Such actions undermine the future of the country, cause economic damage and cause apprehension and fear. Such actions also undermine the future generation due to disruptions in learning institutions.”

By Jane Kibathi.