Area continues to be a hotbed for spread of virus
KUWAIT CITY, April 3: Jleeb Al-Shuyoukh has turned into a chronic headache for the concerned government agencies. Despite the repeated media spotlight on the problems in this area that have greatly exacerbated, the area is still outside the scope of the law. The formation of a government committee to reform the area’s conditions and put an end to the accumulated violations did not result in anything worth mentioning. All measures that were taken were effective for a few weeks if not months, reports Al-Qabas daily.
The daily toured the area recently and discovered increased levels of overcrowding and congestion, which could lead to health disasters if the concerned authorities do not take immediate action. Most parts of Jleeb Al-Shuyoukh area have turned into random makeshift stalls surrounding houses from every direction and side. The scene in Jleeb Al-Shuyoukh area is striking as there are centers where gangs gather and provide protection for market-goers and vendors. There are vigilant eyes monitoring the approach of either the security officials or municipality officials. These gangs alert the vendors and customers to conceal their goods and flee the scene in order to avoid being arrested by the police and municipality officers.
However, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to unravel unusual social behavior, Jleeb Al-Shuyoukh continues to be a hotbed for the spread of the virus due to high density of people in this area. These people gather without regarding the health requirements such as social distancing and wearing of face masks, especially in the open-air market. What is new about the popular markets in Jleeb Al-Shuyoukh area include the size of these markets and the various sections of goods being sold such as vegetables and fruits, used clothes, and other necessities in every empty alley or yard.
People of all nationalities participate in buying and selling, as the matter is no longer restricted to a certain group. However, the most dangerous aspect is the trade of goods from unknown sources or those not suitable for human consumption or use. Almost all of the internal streets in Jleeb Al-Shuyoukh area are used for stalls selling vegetables, fruits, fish and canned foods at low prices. Vehicles are prevented from using such roads. Also, the open yards, especially behind the banks and next to the main supermarket, have been turned into market areas for selling clothes, shoes, and more.
What is striking about the area is the diversity of the materials offered at affordable prices, starting with the clothes, the source of which the sellers claim were of waste or were bought wholesale through the “Al-Haraj” market and then sold at prices ranging between KD 1 and KD 2 per piece. Shoes are also sold at prices ranging between KD 0.5 and KD 5, depending on the type and quality of the shoe. They are cleaned and repaired by the cobbler in the area before they are offered for sale. Often, materials worth KD 0.5 or KD 1 are found and sold for KD 5, which is a good profit according to their description.