Tanzanian livestock sellers have been locked out of Kenyan markets in Kajiado County as part of a move to fight the spread of coronavirus.
Kajiado Governor Joseph Lenku announced the ban over the weekend during a tour of Loitokitok where he distributed face masks to locals.
“No Tanzanian cattle will be allowed in Kajiado livestock markets in Namanga, Loitokitok and Shompole border points. We have completely locked the border,” Lenku said, according to The Citizen.
Kajiado residents had accused the governor of not closing the livestock markets in wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Up until Saturday, the livestock market at Bissil town on the Athi River/Namanga Road was still accessible to Tanzanian and Nairobi livestock markets.
Covid-19 in Kenya
The first Kajiado coronavirus case was reported on March 6 but the county dragged its feet on closing livestock markets.
On Monday, May 4, Kenya recorded 25 more cases of coronavirus from 1,012 samples tested in the last 24 hours bringing the total number of cases to 490.
Out of these cases, 15 are from Nairobi and 10 from Mombasa. All are Kenyans with no history of travel, the Chief Administrative Secretary (CAS) Health, Dr. Mercy Mwangangi said while briefing the media on the country status.
In Nairobi, the cases are distributed in the following estates, Eastleigh 8 cases, Mathare one case, Umoja two cases, Kawangware two, Kahawa West one case and Kariobangi South one case. While in Mombasa, 8 cases are from Old Town, one from Bombululu and one from Jomvu.
Out of the confirmed cases, 13 are males and 12 females whose age distribution ranged from 6 months for the youngest to 60 years for the oldest.
At the same time, the CAS disclosed that six patients were discharged, bringing to 173 the total number of those who have recovered from the disease in the country.
At the global level, theCovid-19 burden stands at 3.3 million people infected and 238, 628 have died. In Africa, the confirmed cases now stand at 29, 438 with 1,064 fatalities.
Dr. Mwangangi noted that there has been a gradual increase in the number of people turning up for testing in targeted hotspot areas such as Kawangware, Eastleigh and Mvita in Mombasa County.
“The targeted testing is meant identify and isolate the infected in order to prevent further transmission, and we are urging Kenyans in these areas to willingly come forward and be tested because it is the most effective strategy of breaking the chain of transmission,” she added.
The CAS also called upon the mask vendors who are allowing more than one person to fit several face masks without buying to stop it since it is a dangerous practice which can lead to mass infection.
She advised the vendors to package the masks according to sizes to limit the possibility of contamination and also warned the wearers of the masks to wear them in the proper way without hanging on the chin.
She also advised the public to strictly observe social distancing requirements, wash hands regularly, and stay at home, and only go out when absolutely necessary.
The Ag. Director-General for Health Dr. Patrick Amoth also disclosed that the Ministry of Health is engaging healthcare workers in relation to the strike they have issued.
The Ministry, he added, is working well with the Public Service Commission (PSC) and the Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC) and has developed a plan which is awaiting approval before it can be shared with the health care workers. “This will include looking at their welfare and needs considering the extra hours they are putting in to tame the Covid- 19 pandemic,” he noted.
Dr. Amoth also disclosed that the government has started evacuating Kenyans who are stranded all over the world including Europe and Asia and those who have gone for treatment especially in India.