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Plan to suspend flights put on hold

By Graham Kajilwa | December 25th 2020 at 00:00:00 GMT +0300

Health CS Mutahi Kagwe [Wilberforce Okwiri, Standard]

The government has reconsidered an earlier plan to suspend international flights following the discovery of a new variant of Sars-CoV-2.

Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe said there is no need to suspend flights since the countries where the variant has been detected are taking the necessary precautions.

He, however, expressed concern over the mass exodus of people from the city to their rural homes for the holidays, adding that the country has reconsidered a proposal to impose a lockdown to restrict people from travelling across counties.

“As a government, we said we will not lock people down. We decided to trust Kenyans; they know there is a problem,” he said. “And you can save yourself and your family, especially this Christmas.”

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The CS, who was speaking in Mukurweini, Nyeri County, said the dangers of the virus are still evident considering the deaths reported in other nations.

“In Britain, there is a crisis of a new variant of the virus that has been detected. Britain is not allowing their own people to travel,” said Kagwe.

Nations like Canada, France, Sweden and Saudi Arabia issued travel advisories that limited entry from the UK. Kenya was expected to make a similar pronouncement on Thursday.

Kenya’s first Covid-19 patient, confirmed on March 12, had passed through London, UK, from the US. It is not clear if the patient was infected in the US or in the UK. In reaction, Kenya suspended international flights a week later, though this was later lifted on August 1.

The closest to Kenya this new variant has been confirmed is South Africa

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