Kenya stares at lockdown, Coronavirus surges

The Ministry of Health has raised alarm over a worrying increase in Coronavirus cases in the country, saying the government may be forced to re-introduce measures, among them closing of schools aimed at curbing the spread of the virus.

Giving daily coronavirus briefs on Tuesday, Health Chief Administrative Secretary (CAS) Dr. Rashid Aman, said the past few days have seen a steady climb in the caseload and that the country is moving above the 5% positivity rate.

He said schools risk closure should the numbers increase.

“We will have to take action to restrict movement or close schools if numbers will increase…We will monitor what is happening in our schools and take action based on what will be fit at that time,” said Dr. Aman.

He added, “We have reported cases of reinfection in our country…..we have instituted measures which have played a big role even as we are relaxing some measures that were put in place.”

The CAS said testing may have to be done in schools as they reopen, however condemning a now viral video showing students being fumigated saying “that is not allowed…that is not right.”

“I appeal to all Kenyans to be vigilant now more than ever before so that we protect our children. Public service vehicles must not overload…If we fail to adhere to the measures we will have ourselves to blame…Teachers should ensure the agreed protocols are adhered to,” he urged.

This came as 318 people tested positive for COVID-19 from 2,592 samples tested in the last 24 hours, taking the country’s infections to 41,937.

Distribution of the cases countywise is as follows; Nairobi (112), Uasin Gishu (30), Mombasa (29), Nakuru (25), Busia (24), Kisii (21), Kisumu (19), Kakamega (8), Murang’a (8), Kilifi (6), Laikipia (5), Kiambu (5), Embu (5), Homa Bay (4), Trans Nzoia (3), Turkana (3), Machakos (2), Isiolo (2), Kajiado (2), Nyandarua (1), Garissa (1), Tharaka Nithi (1), Vihiga (1) and Kirinyaga (1).

Dr. Aman further announced that 243 people recovered from the disease, 132 from the Home-Based Care Program while 111 were discharged from various hospitals, taking total recoveries to 31,340.

Ten patients also succumbed to the disease, bringing the total number of fatalities to 787.

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Antony Nyongesa
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