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Government has suspended flights to India

The Government has suspended flights to and from India for a period of 14 days following an increase in Covid-19 infections and deaths in the country. 

In a press briefing, the Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe issued 72 hours grace period to Kenyans who would wish to travel to or from India to do so.

The Health CS was speaking from Moi County Referral Hospital in Voi, Taita Taveta County where he maintained that the passengers will be required to get tested for Covid-19 on arrival in the Country.

Kagwe however, stated that cargo flights would be exempted from the directive.

Kagwe urged Kenyans seeking treatment in India to seek other alternatives following the surge in Covid-19 cases in the country.

This comes after India had reported 360,960 new cases on Wednesday, April 28, 2021 in 24 hours, taking India’s tally of infections to nearly 18 million. 3,293 fatalities were also reported in the same period of time carrying the toll to 201,187.

The country is also experiencing shortages of oxygen, medical supplies and hospital staff.

This comes moments after a section of Kenyans protested over a passenger plane from India that was expected to land in the country on Friday evening, April 30, 2021.

The plane is expected to depart Mumbai at 1:00pm and arrive in Nairobi at 4:45pm. Kenyans have expressed concern due to the deadly Indian strain of the Covid-19 that has seen the Asian country become the most ravaged by the coronavirus. 

Already, Germany, Italy, Bangladesh, France, UK, Oman, UAE, Hong Kong and Singapore have banned or placed restrictions on travelers from India as well as those who have passed by the country.

In a recent interview, Health CS Mutahi Kagwe hinted that the government would review passenger flights between Kenya and India, but did not make a definite commitment. 

The CS stated that the National Emergency Response Committee (NERC) held a meeting and were set to announce the measures which would be taken.

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    Written by Kennedy Omondi

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