Committee decries Covid-19 transmission spike in Mombasa County

Written By: Haniel Mengistu

Mombasa County Covid-19 response committee lead by Mombasa Governor Ali Hassan Joho and Mombasa County Commissioner Gilbert Kitiyo.
Mombasa County Covid-19 response committee has sounded an alarm over the unprecedented spike of Covid-19 transmission in the past one month with a current positivity rate of 9 percent. 
The committee led by Mombasa Governor Hassan Joho and county commissioner Gilbert Kitiyo hinted that more stringent measures, including a possible lockdown will may be affected should the situation persist.
Recent trends have shown laxity to the adhering of covid-19 set protocols, especially in the transport open markets and worshipping areas during this holy month of Ramadhan.
The committee warns that Muslims should not use the Ramadhan month as excuse to violate the protocols, warning that should it escalate more measures including a possible lockdown will be taken.
“We have noticed there is a lot of laxity in adhering to the protocols, especially in mosques, churches and transport sectors”, said Kitiyo if the trend continues to prepare for the worst and more stringent measures including a possible lockdown.
Joho who spoke at the joint media briefing held at his office warned that by evading the set protocols it will erode the gains made so far against the war on Covid-19.The cases are linked to recent violation of covid-19 rules in the mosques.
“There is a perception created out there that this war of corona virus is a government versus the people, but we are at a point that if we default these protocols we will erode all the gains we have made so far,” said Joho.
Appealed to protocol defaulters to avoid going against the set protocols saying the country may be forced to relook at the already existing measures.
Joho says Mombasa County has created a new extension of covid-19 at Tudor and coast general hospital respectfully to be able to address any spike.
“We are ready to handle any peak ‘in an instant where there is a spike. We will scale down some services at some of the big hospitals to  undertake necessary measures,” said Joho.
According to data released by the team, the county registered 752 last month now 762 this month and the country is worried that the spike may surpass the current 9.3 percent positivity rate.
“It’s a challenge to get oxygen, because we are depending on very little sources, we are worried that if there is a spike then there will be a crisis,” said Joho.
Cautioned politicians against the war on the disease, terming them as inciters of the people.
This is after some Mombasa politicians slammed the country’s decision to force residents to use the bridge for the sake of controlling the spread of the disease.
On the floating bridge, the committee dispelled rumors that there are people forcing residents to pay in the wake of criminal gangs in the area.”That’s play politics on other matters but the matters of lives I urge you to stay away,” said Joho.
The country has waived levies to cushion the hospitality industry. Bed levy suspended. A 50 percent waiver of other related levies affecting the tourism sector was also suspended.
Kenya Coast Tourism Association Coast chairman Victor Shitakha termed the current tourism situation as a tough one economically; saying many employees have Lost jobs due to the pandemic.
The 50 percent waiver for liquor, single business licenses and  extension and bed levy also suspended.
“All the tourism units have put in protocols and the sector will stay alive with the recent relief by the county government,” said Shitakha.
The country has also announced immediate vaccination of tourism players to cushion them from the disease and also in preparation.
Mohamed Mahmoud, chairman of the Kenya Red Cross says experts’ decisions should not be politicised, instead residents should heed to the directives.
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