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Coronavirus Cases In Kenya Rise To 16, Gov’t Appeals To Matatu Operators Not To Hike Fare

Health CS Mutahi Kagwe [Photo/Courtesy]

Kenya has confirmed one more case of Coronavirus (COVID-19), bringing the total number of infections confirmed in the country to 16.

In a state of the nation address on Monday, Health Minister Mutahi Kagwe said the new case is a close contact of one of the eight cases that he confirmed yesterday.

The CS said 646 persons who had come into contact with the COVID-19 patients in the country have been traced.

96 of these cases, the CS said, have been released after completing the mandatory 14-day follow up period, while 550 remain on the follow-up list.

He urged Kenyans to continue following health directives issued by the government in a bid to prevent the spread of the virus.

Kagwe appealed to Public Service Vehicles (PSVs) operators not to hike fares in the wake of COVID-19 crisis.

Read: “Lies and Malice”, Raila Addresses Claims Of Alleged Meeting With Kilifi Deputy Governor Who Tested Positive For Coronavirus

This is after it emerged that Matatu operators, mostly in Nairobi, had hiked fares following a directive by government to reduce number of passengers the vehicles are carrying.

“We appeal to the matatu sector to understand the situation and that some are not earning anything at the moment…understand that the commuters are not in the same financial situation,” he said, adding that it is immoral for business people to think profits in the wake of the prevailing crisis.

The directive, which was issued on Friday by the Health Minister, requires 14-seater matatu operators to reduce their passengers to 8 and 25 seaters to transport 15 passengers.

Those with a larger capacity including the SGR and other trains were ordered to keep a 60 per cent capacity or risk having their licences revoked.

Read Also: Rome-based Catholic Priest Who Officiated Mass, Burial In Siaya Tests Positive For Coronavirus

In his address on Monday, Kagwe reiterated that all passengers coming into the country between now and Wednesday, March 25, when all flights except cargo will be halted, must quarantine.

He said the individuals will be required to isolate themselves at a state-designated facility or hotel approved by government at their own expense before being allowed to go home.

Kagwe called on hoteliers not to take advantage of the situation and hike accommodation prices.

“I want to thank those hotels but ask not to hike normal charges or no more than 25 pc of that. To expect a person who had no plans to stay at a hotel to pay normal prices is immoral,” he said.

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Written by Wycliffe Nyamasege

Just email news@kahawatungu.com

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