Chinese nationals residing in Kenya on Friday morning sought to flee the country, a day before international flights resume.
Long queues were witnessed at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) this morning.
— Viusasa News (@news_viusasa) July 31, 2020
According to a local blog, the Chinese nationals were leaving on request by their government.
“The group is scheduled to fly to China on a repatriation flight. These flights are approved via a bilateral agreement between nations,” Kenya Airways Communications Director Dennis Kashero told the blog.
Those asked why they were fleeing the country, they noted that the upsurge in Covid-19 cases was worrying.
Others said that they were afraid Kenya cannot handle a spike in positive cases as the healthcare system is already overstretched with a little less than 20,000 cases of infection.
On Thursday, Transport CS James Macharia said that 11 countries had been cleared to fly in and out of the country starting Saturday.
They are: China, South Korea, Japan, Canada, Zimbabwe, Ethiopia, Switzerland, Rwanda, Uganda, Namibia and Morocco.
Last month, the Chinese Embassy denied reports that at least 200 of its nationals had fled the country at night.
“The Embassy firmly reiterates that the reports on DN about Chinese taking flights back are false.There is no passenger flight to China this week.The claims that 200 Chinese flew out last night via China SA flight is totally false and based on the reporter’s imagination,” the tweet read.
Within the same period, there were reports that some 400 Chinese nationals had moved to court seeking to be repatriated.
They decried discrimination ever since the first case of coronavirus was reported in Kenya in mid-March.