Consider burying your relatives abroad if they die there – Government says as COVID-19 cases increase

Amb Macharia Kamau. FILE PHOTO: Courtesy

The Ministry of Health has raised a red flag over the “phenomenal increase in the number of new infections in the counties.”

Health Chief Administrative Secretary (CAS) Dr Mercy Mwangangi in her daily brief on COVID-19 said on Tuesday that this is alarming even as measures towards curbing the further spread of the virus are rolled out.

She confirmed that 8 more people tested positive for COVID-19 since Monday. Of the eight, five are Kenyans while the other three are foreign nationals.

Six of the new COVID-19 patients have a history of travel from Dubai, Pakistan, Zambia and Comoros. The total number of those infected with COVID-19 stands at 216.

Dr Mwangangi further stated that six of the patients were on quarantine while the other two were picked by the government’s surveillance team. One more patient has been released adding up to a total of 41 patients released so far.

A total of 694 samples were tested.

She announced that the government will commence mass testing in the country based on a cluster model in the counties to avert a full-blown pandemic.

In a bid to manage to spread of the virus, the CAS remarked that “12,000 testing kits will be deployed to target areas” in the first phase of mass testing.

Even as the numbers of those who test positive increase, Kenya has issued a new directive that will see all her citizens who die in the diaspora buried there and within 24 hours.

Amb Macharia Kamau, the PS Ministry of Foreign Affairs in a press briefing on Tuesday said this is a great step towards fighting the spread of coronavirus in Kenya.

“We also request Kenyans to bear with us to bury those who die in the diaspora within 24 hours and maybe the families should consider letting them be buried there given the circumstances,” Kamau said.

Kenya has since suspended all international flights in the effort to manage the spread of the virus. A dusk to dawn curfew has been imposed it the whole country while cessation of movement has also been imposed in COVID-19 hotspot counties.

President Uhuru Kenyatta banned in-bound and outbound movement for 21 days in Kilifi, Kwale, Mombasa and Nairobi.