At least thirty people died of Covid-19 in Malindi Sub County within the month of June this year, the Malindi Covid-19 Interfaith Committee has said.
The committee said an average of ten people are confirmed positive for the virus daily, while all the isolation wards in the sub county were full of patients, raising fears that community transmissions were on the rise, thus calling for urgent remedial measures.
Consequently, members of the committee held a peaceful sensitization procession in Malindi Town on Monday to stress the need for residents to adhere to all Ministry of Health guidelines and protocols to curtail the spread.
Members of the committee, who comprised religious leaders from the Christian, Islamic and Hindu faiths as well as health workers and police officers, marched from the Sindbad recreational grounds through the Malindi Central Business District distributing facemasks and educating the public on ways of combating the contagion through proper use of facemasks, hand washing and use of hand sanitizers.
They also urged residents to avoid large gatherings especially in funerals and weddings and called for tough measures to be imposed on politicians who convene political gatherings in contravention of a government directive not to do so.
Speaking to journalists, Malindi Sub County Police Commander Simon Muli said the intention of the campaign was to inform the public that Covid-19 is real and encourage them observe the Covid-19 protocols.
He warned that police officers would not relent on the enforcement of government directives, including arresting and charging those who do not wear facemasks and leaders who flout Covid-19 protocols.
“Today we joined the Interfaith Covid-19 committee to ensure to create awareness on Covid-19, although we shall not relent to enforce law and order in the fight against the spread of the virus,” he added.
Bishop James Njiha of Worldwide Hospit Church of Kenya told residents not to put facemasks to avoid being arrested by the police, but to wear them to protect themselves from the pandemic.
The committee’s secretary, Mr. Ali Attas Shariff, said all the isolation centres in the sub county were full of patients and that 122 people were receiving treatment.
“We came together as religious leaders, police, County inspectorate and health officers to create awareness and distribute 5,000 masks donated by Mombasa Cement,” he said.
Mr Ali said they are distributing face masks in the fight against Covid-19 to churches, mosques, temples and encouraging people to maintain social distance, wash hands and wear masks.
Dr Godfrey Njoroge from the Malindi Sub County hospital who is also a member of Covid-19 committee confirmed that last month alone they recorded 30 Covid-19 related deaths and that there was need to create more awareness on the disease.
“About 10 cases of Covid-19 infection are reported daily,” he said, adding so far over 100 Covid-19 patients are receiving treatment in their homes within Malindi Sub County.