Will Kenya ban flights from UK over new coronavirus strain? All eyes on CS Mutahi Kagwe

British Airways
British Airways. [Photo courtesy]

With reports of a new COVID-19 strain in Britain, a host of countries in Europe have banned flights to and from London as a safety precaution.

British Prime Minister Borris Johnson confirmed the presence of a much lethal strain of coronavirus which is behind a deadly spike of the disease in the last few weeks.

This has put the country on another heightened lockdown as new cases get out of control.

So far, more than 20 countries around the world have banned inbound and outbound flights to Great Britain over the new strain.

Among them is France, Germany, Italy, South Africa, Canada, Netherlands, Belgium, Sweden, Switzerland, Austria among others which have banned flights from Britain.

As this happens, all eyes on Kenya’s Health Ministry led by Mutahi Kagwe to give direction on whether Kenya will impose travel restrictions on flights from the UK or not.

The CS was yet to respond to these queries by Tuesday afternoon even as the debate remains a hot subject among the Kenyan public.

Going from experience, Kenyans expected the Health Ministry to announce a travel restriction on British flights into the country if the first few cases of COVID-19 are anything to go by.

Kenya in March took time before shutting down its airspace and by the time it did, the virus had already penetrated, most of which was carried by travellers from abroad.

However, British tourists account for a huge percentage of travelers to Kenya especially during the festive period like the Christmas holidays when business is booming for hoteliers at the Kenyan Coast.

Besides tourism, Britain is an integral business partner for Kenya and a ban on her flight to Kenya would deal a hefty blow to various sectors of the economy.

In the British flight bans, most of them last up to several weeks, for example, Russia which banned all flights from the UK to begin Monday midnight for a period of seven days

For Germany, the ban will remain effective until January.