Nairobi News


Matiang’i’s big no to calls for Diwali public holiday on Monday

Monday is not a public holiday.

This is the message from the Interior Ministry headed by cabinet secretary Fred Matiang’i in response to demands, especially on social media, for Monday October 28 to be declared a public holiday.

In a post shared on Twitter on Friday, the Interior Ministry urged Kenyans to ignore a widely circulated Gazette Notice declaring the day a public holiday as a fake.

“Kindly ignore a gazette notice circulating on social media claiming Monday 28th October 2019 to be a public holiday. Monday 28th remains a normal working day,” the ministry said.

The photo of the purported Gazette Notice emerged as the popular Diwali holiday falls on Sunday October 27 yet the Hindu holiday is not among days gazetted as public holidays in Kenya.

The Interior Ministry’s response comes amid demands by a section of Kenyans for CS Matiang’i to declare Monday a public holiday to celebrate the beginning of Diwali, the four-to-five day-long festival.

Diwali, which is also called the Festival of Lights, and is celebrated by Hindus, Jains, Sikhs and some Buddhists every year to honor Rama-chandra, the seventh avatar or the incarnation of the Hindu god Vishnu.

It is believed that on the particular day Rama returned to his people after spending 14 years in exile, a period during which he fought and won a battle against demons and the demon king, Ravana.