COVID-19 variant from India detected in Kenya, Ministry of Health says


Acting Health DG Dr. Patrick Amoth during a past coronavirus press briefing. PHOTO | FILE
Acting DG for Health Dr. Patrick Amoth during a past coronavirus press briefing. PHOTO | FILE

The COVID-19 variant from India has now been detected in Kenya, the Ministry of Health has stated.

Acting Director General for Health Dr. Patrick Amoth, speaking on Wednesday during the daily coronavirus briefings, said the cases were reported in five people working in a fertilizer plant in Kisumu.

“Yes, this variant has been picked in Kenya, and because of global connectivity, it is just a question of time. You cannot be able to put barriers to prevent a virus from accessing your territory,” said Dr. Amoth.

Dr. Amoth, who also doubles up as the Vice President of the Executive Board of World Health Organisation (WHO), further added that contact tracing is currently ongoing.

Kenya hence becomes the second country in the East African region to record a case of the deadly Indian COVID-19 variant.

This after Uganda late last month detected the variant from a citizen who had returned from a visit to India.

Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe on April 28, 2021 announced that all passenger flights travelling from India will not be allowed entry into Kenya for 14 days.

The ban followed the huge surge in COVID-19 infections and deaths in the South Asian country.

CS Mutahi Kagwe further announced that all passengers arriving into Kenya will undergo mandatory COVID-19 testing and those who test positive will be put under mandatory quarantine.

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