Coronavirus: Gov’t suspends international flights, shuts down all bars


Coronavirus: Gov't suspends international flights, shuts down all bars
Health CS Mutrahi Kagwe addresses a press conference on coronavirus on March 22, 2020.

In Summary

  • Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe, addressing a press conference at Harambee House on Sunday, stated that cargo flights were the only exception to this rule.
  • He also added that all those coming into the country between Sunday and Wednesday - Kenyans or foreigners - will undergo mandatory quarantine at a government designated facility at their own expense.

The government of Kenya has now resolved to suspend all international flights effective Wednesday, March 25 as one of the measures of thwarting the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe, addressing a press conference at Harambee House on Sunday, stated that cargo flights were the only exception to this rule.

He also added that all those coming into the country between Sunday and Wednesday — both Kenyan citizens and  foreigners — will undergo mandatory quarantine at a government designated facility at their own expense.

“Countries wishing to evacuate their nationals must make their arrangements to do so within this period. Kenyans who are currently in foreign countries, and will not have come back within the said period, are advised to observe the guidelines issued in the respective countries wherever they are,” he stated.

The CS also castigated a section of Kenyans for ignoring government directives on dealing with the pandemic and, instead, “acting as if it is business as usual.”

“As I cautioned last week, this disease is not a joke, Kenyans must treat this matter with the seriousness it deserves by adjusting and changing their lifestyles,” said CS Kagwe.

He hence ordered the closure of all bars in the country effective Sunday midnight until further notice.

The CS further announced that restaurants are to remain open but only for purposes of facilitating take away services.

“This is meant to secure the social distance requirement, noting the increased risk of transmission these facilities cause,” said Kagwe

He also announced the government’s resolve to suspend all social gatherings in religious settings such as churches, mosques as well as funerals which are now only restricted to close family members not exceeding 15.

All public service vehicles have also been asked to adhere to the directive issued on Friday March 20, 2020 failure to which the respective Sacco licenses will be revoked. The Inspector General of Police has already been directed to enforce this directive.

CS Kagwe, also during the presser, announced that the country had recorded 8 new positive cases of Covid-19, bringing the total number to 15.

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Story By Ian Omondi
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