Police officers outside Jamia Mosque on March 27, 2023

There was a heavy police presence on major roads in Nairobi ahead of Azimio's planned protests.

Deployments started at midnight on Sunday with police at times mounting roadblocks to inspect approaching vehicles.

This scared many motorists. On some routes, matatu operators boycotted business.

The streets of Nairobi Central Business District (CBD) on Monday remained deserted as traders and commuters stayed away.

Usually, the streets of the city are full of people going about their daily business as early as 5 am.

Kenya National Archives, Afya Centre and near the former Hilton hotel, which are usually packed with people, were left almost empty.

There were police patrols on the streets with the officers telling any form of gathering including more than two people to disperse.

Locals said there were police roadblocks on Juja Road, Kibera slums, Kawangware, Mathare, Umoja, Buruburu, State House Roads, roads near Gikomba, among other routes.

Waiyaki Way appeared to be normal with both privately owned vehicles and matatus heading towards and from the CBD.

At the Museum Exit of the Expressway, there was a traffic snarl up, indicating some motorists had resorted to using it as an alternative.

Traders at Gikomba said there were no vehicles on the road by 7.40 am and this had affected their businesses.

Police bosses stayed until late to plan the deployment of police to ensure few or no protesters get to the city centre.

Deputy president Rigathi Gachagua who had Sunday evening met top police commanders said he arrived at his Harambee House Annex office at 5.15 am for the day's operations.

“Good morning Kenya, as usual, at 5.15 am in the office today, we are rebuilding our great Nation. Blessed week ahead.

Police officers outside Jamia Mosque on March 27, 2023

President William Ruto flew to German on Sunday morning for a week-long trip leaving Rigathi in charge.

And to show his prowess, Rigathi summoned top police officers led by Inspector General of police Japhet Koome and Interior Principal Secretary Ronald Omollo to his office for a briefing.

This was an unusual meeting, according to those in the know.

Koome had assured residents of security Monday and urged them to continue with their businesses.

He said he had mobilized more police to ensure those planning the protests are stopped in estates.

The IG said the protests are illegal and warned of dire action against those turning up for the same.

The opposition has insisted they will continue to protest against among others the high cost of living and lack of inclusivity in government.

Police refused to provide security for the protests and instead announced they are banned.