At a time when political allegiances and ethnic loyalties have been shelved aside in a rare show of unity as Kenyans come together to condemn the travel restrictions that have been imposed on the country by the United Kingdom, Kiambu senator, who also happens to be the Senate Chief Whip, Kimani Wamatangi, has confounded many by siding with the British government’s policies.
Even as most Kenyans continue to argue that the travel restrictions are laced with a tinge of prejudice and racism, Senator Wamatangi asserted that the British actions were not only understandable but also fully justified.
The Kiambu senator said this in response to Rarieda member of parliament Otiende Amollo who had just made the point that the travel restrictions by the British were uncalled for.
Senior Counsel Amollo gave figures of the infection rate in America, which he quoted as being more than 30 million people infected and more than half a million deaths.
In Britain, he said that confirmed cases of infected people were standing at more than four million cases, while the death toll was at more than a hundred thousand. Yet in Kenya, the number of confirmed cases of infected people was around a hundred and forty thousand, and deaths stood at around two thousand, concluded Otiende Amollo.
He then went on to say that taking these numbers into consideration, it was the UK, and in general, Western countries, that were a risk to countries such as Kenya, and not the other way around.
However, when giving his take on the new policies that have been adopted against Kenya in order to restrict the number of Kenyan visitors to the UK, Wamatangi was of a different view.
He said that, even by simply watching the TV, one could easily see that the British were adhering to their government’s regulations such as curfew hours and social distancing.
On the issue of infection rates and death tolls, he opposed Hon. Otiende Amollo, saying that Kenya’s level of testing was low compared to the other countries, and that was why our numbers were lesser.
He said that if only we could test the same numbers that the British were testing, our figures would skyrocket.
He finished by saying that even if their rates were indeed higher than ours, they were working hard to contain the pandemic, and weren’t about to mess it up by allowing interaction with countries that were treating the pandemic casually.