Nairobi's Central Business District (CBD) faces renewed disruption as Kenyans prepare to take to the streets once more to protest the contentious Finance Bill 2024.

Last week, the city witnessed tense standoffs between protestors and police that left two protestors dead and several people injured, raising concerns about potential economic fallout for businesses still reeling from the initial clashes.

The driving force behind the protests, coming together under the hashtag #RejectFinanceBill2024, is public anger towards the bill's proposed tax measures.

Many Kenyans, already grappling with a challenging economic climate, view these provisions as "punitive" and a further squeeze on their livelihoods.

The Kenyan government, caught between respecting the right to peaceful protest and maintaining public order, has issued a statement outlining guidelines for the demonstrations.

Released on Monday, by Interior CS Kithure Kindiki, the statement emphasizes the need for protestors to remain peaceful, refrain from obstructing traffic, and conclude activities by sunset.

It further assures that national security organs will uphold neutrality and enforce the law with impartiality.

Beyond the immediate disruptions to businesses, another layer of concern has emerged – the potential for internet and mass media disruptions during the protests.

A formidable coalition of 27 international organizations and Kenyan associations, including human rights defenders and media watchdogs, have expressed deep anxieties about the possibility of internet shutdowns or media restrictions.

They warn that such actions would constitute a "gross violation of fundamental human rights" and severely impede communication, economic activity, and crucial human rights monitoring efforts.

The coalition argues that shutting down or throttling the internet, shadow-banning hashtags, or imposing a media blackout on live reporting would stifle public discourse and hinder the ability of Kenyans to organize, demonstrate, and participate in shaping policy.

They highlight the #RejectFinanceBill2024 hashtag as more than just a trending topic, but a symbol of citizen engagement and a critical space for dialogue on the 2024 Finance Bill's potential impact on the national economy and individual livelihoods.

The upcoming protests threaten to exacerbate the economic woes of businesses in the Nairobi CBD, many of which are still attempting to recover from the earlier clashes.

The full extent of the economic impact remains to be seen.

As tensions simmer, all eyes are on how the protests unfold and whether the government and protestors can find a path towards compromise.

A peaceful resolution that addresses public concerns while maintaining public order is crucial for both the economic well-being of the city and the democratic health of the nation.