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Covid-19: Kenya reports 178 new cases, 4 deaths

Health & Science

Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe at a past press briefing at the Ministry of Health, Afya House, Nairobi on August 29, 2020. [File, Standard]

Kenya reported 178 new coronavirus cases for September 2, the third consecutive day it was reporting under 200 infections, the Ministry of Health said even as it is dogged with reduced testing capacities and allegations of mismanaging funds to curb the disease.

The new cases, from some 3,474 tests done in the past 24 hours, push the national infection tally to 34,493.

The cumulative tests now stand at 459,562.

Of the new cases, all save for five are Kenyans, Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe said in a statement.

"In terms of gender, 110 are males and 68 females," Kagwe said, adding that the youngest was a three-year-old while the oldest was aged 77.

The distribution of the cases was as follows; Nairobi (48), Kericho (24), Busia (22), Garissa (12), Kiambu (12), Kisii (10), Kisumu (9), Uasin Gishu (8), Nakuru (7), Embu (6), Bomet (4) and Mombasa (3). Kitui, Machakos and Narok counties each had two cases. This is as Laikipia, Meru, Siaya, Isiolo, Makueni and Nyeri recorded a case each.

At the same time, some 238 patients have recovered from the disease in the past 24 hours with a majority of them being from the home-based care system.

Only 51 patients were discharged from various hospitals, CS Kagwe said highlighting the growing success of treating asymptomatic cases at home and reserving institutional care for patients who need critical care.

Total recoveries are now at 20,449.

"We thank our healthcare workers for the good work they are doing," said Kagwe.

Unfortunately, four lives were lost to the disease in the past day. This increases the fatalities to 581.

Meanwhile, CS Mutahi Kagwe appeared before the National Assembly Health Committee in regards to an ongoing probe on his ministry's handling of the Covid-19 procurement that has attracted public anger.

The House committee, chaired by Murang'a Woman Representative Sabina Chege, is investigating how the funds and donations earmarked for medical equipment needed in the fight against coronavirus were used.

Kenya Medical Supplies Authority (Kemsa) is accused irregularly awarding inflated tenders to hand-picked companies to supply Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) and other assorted items.

In his testimony, however, Kagwe has held that no monies were lost in the procurement of the items and that the equipment were at Kemsa warehouses.

Kagwe also said his ministry was hiding nothing and that they will not shield anyone linked to irregularities at Kemsa.

"My ministry is determined to clear every single item and issue that may be in doubt as far as this committee is concerned. We have no intention of protecting anybody or hiding anything, " said Kagwe.

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