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37 quarantined in Makueni after interacting with nun from Spain

By Christopher Owuor
Thursday, March 26th, 2020
Health CS Mutahi Kagwe addresses the media at Afya House in Nairobi yesterday where he announced three new cases of coronavirus. Photo/PD/JOHN OCHIENG

Some 37 people in Mukaa Sub-county, Makueni, have been quarantined after interacting with a Catholic nun who arrived in Kenya from Spain on March 18 and defied the 14-day self-quarantine directive.

Makueni Health Executive Dr Andrew Mulwa said the 37 were traced after coming in contact with the nun and will be required to self-quarantine for 14 days in their homes.

‘‘They will stay in their homes for the 14 days and if any of them exhibits symptoms of Covid-19, necessary action will be taken,’’ said Mulwa.

Remain vigilant

The nun was forced to self-isolate after residents complained to the authorities. She is said to have been picked from the airport by her parents and two sisters. 

Mulwa also disclosed that seven other people in the county, who recently jetted-in from abroad trips and refused to self-quarantine have been forcibly isolated.

He said the cases were reported in Malili, Sultan Hamud, Kathonzweni, Nziu, Mbumbuni, Kikumbulyu and Wote. The affected had travelled from several countries including Uganda, Spain, and South Africa.

“In collaboration with Machakos county, we are currently doing contact-tracing for the case in Nziu because she used a matatu,’’ said Mulwa.

Also being quarantined is a boda boda operator in Mbumbuni who ferried a Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) employee with flu-like symptoms.

Briefing the press yesterday in Wote, the Health Executive urged residents to remain vigilant, saying Kenya was in a position to contain the spread of the disease without going into a complete lockdown.

“Japan has contained the spread of Covid-19 without a lockdown because the people heeded to the precautionary measures given, we can also do the same if we adhere to the guidelines,” he added.

Hike fares

Makueni county commissioner Maalim Mohamed (pictured) said Thwake multipurpose dam construction site may be put under lockdown if the contractor does not adhere to safety measures.

He also warned public transport operators against hiking fares and carrying excess passengers.

Fares have doubled forcing passengers to dig deeper into their pockets. 

Matatus plying the Nairobi-Wote route are now charging Sh1,000 up from Sh400 while fare to Makindu from Wote is up from Sh250 to Sh400. 

Maalim said two vehicles have been impounded for flouting the stringent measures on carrying capacity.

‘‘One belongs to Semaka Sacco and another to Sema Sacco, we will have their licenses revoked,” he said. -KNA