‘Prepare for the worst,’ CS Kagwe tells Kenyans as Covid-19 cases rise

‘Prepare for the worst,’ CS Kagwe tells Kenyans as Covid-19 cases rise

Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe on Tuesday warned Kenyans to prepare for a possible worst-case scenario in regards with the Covid-19 outbreak in the country.

CS Kagwe, speaking during a press address at Afya House, said the situation is likely to get worse before it gets better, adding that the country may continue to battle the pandemic for at least another two months.

He however also stated, on a positive note, that the infections among Kenyans are only mild, adding that the mortality rate is also low.

According to the CS, though, Kenyans must continue adhering by directives laid out by the government as “this is no reason to be relaxed at all.”

“Fellow Kenyans, let us brace ourselves for bad news, let us be ready because all the measures that we are going to take will not stop the disease abruptly. It is already here with us,” said CS Kagwe.

“We are hoping and praying for the best, but clearly we must also prepare for the worst. We are aware of the inconveniences caused but this is the only way.”

The CS noted with concern the chaos witnessed on Monday evening when the government banned movement in and out of the Nairobi Metropolitan area as well as the counties of Kilifi, Kwale and Mombasa.

He added that the restriction was necessary so as to thwart the spread of the virus since two out of the 14 new cases were reported in Mandera and the patients had only recently traveled from Mombasa.

“The two reported cases in Mandera had traveled from Mombasa. That explains why a decision was taken by the President to close some of the areas we feel people moving into and out of are causing further spread of the virus,” he explained.

CS Kagwe also revealed a set of new rules to enhance social distancing in the country, closing down with immediate effect all golf clubs in the country.

He also directed managers of sporting clubs to restrict the number of people going in, adding that this will be monitored for the next couple of days before more measures – if necessary – are introduced.

“Open air sporting clubs that have walking fields must strictly observe social distancing. We have observed in some sporting clubs where people are walking or running next to each other, there’s no better way of passing this virus when they do so,” he said.

“Testing of all health workers and medical staff including those in private hospitals, rapid response teams and all staff in all facilities holding quarantined persons must commence testing with immediate effect.”

CS Kagwe spoke while announcing that the country had recorded 14 more cases of the novel coronavirus, raising the total number to 172, with 3 recoveries.

He noted that four of the 14 cases have a recent history of travel from Tanzania, South Africa, UAE and the United States while 10 were picked by surveillance teams in the country.

The CS noted that out of the 14 new patients, seven are from Nairobi, two from Mombasa, two from Mandera while Machakos, Kisii and Kiambu Counties have one new victim each.