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Coronavirus: Kenyans furious as state allows flights from China

Health & Science - By Sigomba Ramadhan Omar | February 27th 2020 at 12:13:32 GMT +0300

File photo of a plane belonging to China Southern Airlines on the runway at JKIA, Nairobi. [Standard]

Allowing flights from the virus hit China is precarious, Kenyans have told the government.

The government announced Wednesday that China Southern Airlines had resumed its flights from Guangzhou, one of the hotbeds of the novel coronavirus, to Nairobi.

The airline has four flights a week.

The Ministry of Health advised 239 passengers who arrived in the country yesterday to quarantine themselves for 14 days after being cleared at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport.

Covid 19 Time Series

 

World Health Organisation notes 14 days as the incubation period, effectively meaning symptoms begin to appear 14 days after contracting the virus.

The arrival of the passengers has overwrought Kenyans who fear the country might be unable to contain the highly contagious virus if it is imported.

Kenyans took to social networks to express displeasure on the government’s move with some of them saying it is tantamount to risking their lives.

Makueni Senator Mutula Kilonzo Jr questioned MoH’s self-quarantine suggestion as a prevention and control measure.

“Self-quarantine is an oxymoron. We are inviting coronavirus with a bouquet of flowers,” the legislator tweeted.

Other disappointed tweeps asked how the passengers can voluntary isolate themselves considering some are tourists or came for business.

Some have asked MPs and Senators to compel the government to put in place austerity measures that would secure the country from the killer virus.

The deadly novel coronavirus has already spread to over 40 countries prompting fears of a pandemic.

More than 74,000 people have been infected by the virus in China and hundreds more in other countries.

As a consequence, airlines have suspended flights in response to the coronavirus outbreak.

Kenya alongside her two East African neighbours Rwanda and Tanzania suspended flights in January.

Despite suspending flights to China, Kenya has been allowing other airlines from china in the country.

As Kenyans express fears on Social media platforms, government spokesman Cyrus Oguna said there is no cause for alarm "because all precautionary measures are in place and everybody who comes into the country is screened adequately."

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