o help some of the hundreds of thousands of Kenyans who have lost their jobs because of the Coronavirus pandemic, the government is paying some of them to brave open sewers to clean up their neighbourhoods.
Dressed in neon vests, masks and gumboots, they stand ankle-deep in a stinking, grey stream which runs between the corrugated iron shacks of Kibera, the largest informal settlement in the capital, Nairobi.
They scoop plastic bottles, broken shoes, dirty nappies and human faeces from the open sewer, using their metal spades and rakes.
“It’s disgusting work,” says 33-year-old Abdul Aziz, who is worried that he might get a water-borne disease like cholera because of the insanitary working conditions.
“However, this is better than staying at home, while being hungry and jobless,” the father of two children, who lost his job as a private driver at the beginning of the crisis, said.