Devki billionaire pledges Sh100m oxygen donation


Devki founder Narendra Raval. FILE PHOTO | NMG

Devki Steel Mills Thursday pledged to donate Sh100 million worth of oxygen to public hospitals amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The steel company owned by billionaire Narendra Raval said in a letter to the Ministry of Health that the donations will be available for collection from their Mombasa, Athi-River and Ruiru plants.

"I hereby confirm the pledge to donate oxygen up to Sh100 million to all government hospitals throughout the country," Mr Raval said.

Two more Kenyans have died of coronavirus and the number of cases as at Thursday passed the 100 mark to 110. The ministry reported 29 news cases, 28 of which are Kenyans and one Congolese.

Ample supply of oxygen is needed for the management of Covid-19 patients, who experience breathing difficulty.

On Wednesday BOC said that it was seeking up to 20,000 underutilised or idle oxygen cylinders to enable it ramp up supply of medical oxygen to hospitals.

The firm's appeal for oxygen cylinders is part of the efforts by the private sector to augment the State’s response to the virus.

Mr Raval’s contribution will go towards the State’s Covid-19 Emergency Fund that was instituted by President Uhuru Kenyatta on Monday.

The government launched a private sector-led Covid-19 Emergency Response Fund to mobilise resources for fighting the spread and impact of the virus.

“The exchequer contributions shall be supplemented by donations by Kenyan individuals and corporate entities, grants from our development partners and multinational institutions, and other such gifts, subscriptions and contributions as the fund may receive from time to time,” said the President.