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Governors Joho and Roba call for lockdown to tame coronavirus spread

NAIROBI
By Cyrus Ombati | March 24th 2020

Two governors have called on President Uhuru Kenyatta to declare a total lockdown in the country to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

They argue that is the only way the country can contain the spread of the disease.

Mombasa’s Ali Hassan Joho (above) and his Mandera counterpart Ali Roba said a lockdown is inevitable to tame the spread.

Joho said Kenya should learn from Wuhan, China - the epicentre of the worldwide COVID-19 - where shutdown of day-to-day activities has proven effective in containing the spread of the pandemic.

“Why did Wuhan beat the virus? It is very simple - a total shutdown. That is what has made them successful. They are even saying they will not allow other people to come to Wuhan where it all began,” said Joho.

He said a lockdown would bring along serious ramifications but pointed out it is a painful decision that the country ought to take.

“These are painful decisions… Do we need to take them? Yes! Of course. They could cost us… So be it. I want to go on record that I said it. There is a need to scale down on the things that we normally do in our day to day lives for the purposes of preventing coronavirus from coming in our midst.”

Roba said the country should not wait further.

“Instead of waiting for these rising numbers to get to catastrophic levels, we must consider total lockdown early. This is the only way we can get some control guaranteed. It is my humble appeal to HE the President to move with speed to mitigate the rising cases of COVID 19,” he said.

The number of coronavirus cases in Kenya rose to 16 after one more individual was declared positive on Monday, March 23.

Roba said Mandera County Government shall implement special allowance for doctors, nurses, clinical officers and health workers assigned to the COVID-19 response as a motivation gesture.

“Ban on miraa transportation and sale within the county remains in force and we ask the public to bear with us, because it is temporary restriction occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic and no formal and informal meetings such as Fadi Kudhirir at Miraa selling joints, hotels and restaurants,” he said.

He added movement of people between Mandera Town border, Bulahawa and Malka Suftu are restricted except for movement of food stuff as well as Elwak Somali and Elwak Kenya, Damasa Kenya and Damasa Somalia.

“All residents of Mandera are encouraged to limit travels to and from Nairobi. All parents are ordered to confine children within their plots or houses and chiefs to ensure children do not congregate at play grounds.”

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