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State plans more evacuations

Kamau Macharia
Foreign Affairs Principal Secretary Kamau Macharia. PHOTO | DENNIS ONSONGO 

More Kenyans living abroad are set to be evacuated in the coming weeks, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said, as 15 new Covid-19 cases were confirmed in the country Tuesday, raising the national tally to 715.

The announcement comes as the national carrier Kenya Airways #ticker:KQ prepares to evacuate more Kenyans from the UK. The planned KQ flight is scheduled for Friday, May 15.

Foreign Affairs Principal Secretary Kamau Macharia said at a media briefing that Kenya had so far repatriated about 700 Kenyans from various countries, including China, India and the UK.

“So far we facilitated about 700 Kenyans, but we expect a few more to trickle into the country over the next few weeks as... we find means to facilitate their return,” said Dr Macharia.

“But also to emphasise that many Kenyans around the world are recognising that it is important they stay where they are, that they are best advised to remain where they are domiciled.”

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He also pointed out that while there are over 3,000 Kenyans who are living in China only 169 took the recent evacuation flight.

The Ministry of Health announced that eight more persons were discharged from hospitals, bringing total recoveries to 259. Three more people died, bringing total Covid-19 fatalities in the country to 36.

Health Chief Administrative Secretary Rashid Aman said the new confirmed cases are from Mombasa (seven), Migori (three), Wajir (two) and one each from Nairobi, Machakos and Kiambu counties. The positive cases were from 978 samples tested.

Dr Aman also said that the government was getting concerned about the threat of Covid-19 spreading along its borders, adding that two Tanzanian truck drivers who tested positive had been denied entry into Kenya.

The three new deaths were from Mombasa, two of them occurring at home.

Non-hospital deaths are an emerging problem for health officials as severely sick Covid-19 patients refuse to seek medical attention.

Last week, Health director-general Patrick Amoth warned there could be a rise in coronavirus infections in the communities where non-hospital deaths are occurring.

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