The greatest number of retail establishments in the township sell general merchandise. These shops, of which there are seventy-two, are unspecialized and offer for sale a wide variety of merchandise including cloth, kerosene, tinned food, pencils, spices, soft drinks, and pots and pans.
Most of these businesses are small and family with rarely more than two people serving customers at any one time. It appears that this type of business has longer hours than others. The shops open early in the morning and during lunch-time, many of them close for a few hours when it is especially hot; by three o’clock all are open again and will remain so until late into the evening.
These stores are more widely scattered in Malindi than any other type and they are even found in the poorer sections of Shella. Such small general merchandise shops are known throughout East Africa as dukas and they are usually run by Asians