Nine relatives who used an empty coffin and forged travel permits to travel out of Nairobi have been put on forced quarantine in Homa Bay County.
On Saturday, Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe said the driver of the vehicle had been confirmed to be positive. "You can see how one person's selfishness has taken the disease from Nairobi to Homa Bay. If we are not careful, this disease is going to finish us. This is not a disease for Kagwe or Uhuru. It is my disease and your disease. Stay at home and you will not infect anybody or be infected," Kagwe said.
The nine travelled in the same vehicle on Tuesday for the burial of Joyce Opar whose body was already lying at home at Kadede village, Rambira Location in Rachuonyo North Sub-County.
The nine included the late Opar’s two daughters, grandchildren and other relatives. When asked why they had to buy the coffin from Nairobi, the family said they did so because the people at home could not buy it.
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“We decided to purchase the coffin in Nairobi because the people who were supposed to buy it at home were untrustworthy,” she said.
But Homa Bay County Commissioner David Kipkemei accused the nine of forging travel documents for their journey.
Kipkemei told Standard Digital that the nine lied to security officials that they had removed a body from Mama Lucy Hospital morgue in Nairobi.
“Our investigations revealed that they lied to security officials that they had a body in the coffin yet the coffin was empty. This was meant to violate the government regulations of partial lockdown in Nairobi,” Kipkemei said.
Kipkemei said they rushed to the bereaved family’s home and arrested the nine before they were forcefully quarantined for 14 days. They will be charged after the quarantine. “They will also have to pay the cost of their stay at the quarantine centre,” he said.
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The administrator warned that people from risky counties will not be allowed to enter Homa Bay.