It was a relief for 232 Kenyans who jetted back into the country Thursday evening after months of being stranded in India due to the suspension of flights as a mitigation measure against the spread of COVID-19.
While receiving the passengers who were onboard a special flight from Mumbai which landed at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, Foreign Affairs CAS Ababu Namwamba said that the government will continue partnering with the national carrier to provide flights that will bring back home Kenyans who are stranded across different parts of the world.
Namwamba lauded the partnership saying that it will avert the agony of many Kenyans stranded abroad.
At JKIA last night CAS @AbabuNamwamba received a section of the 232 passengers from 6 cities in India aboard the special facilitated flight KQ205 from Mumbai. The sense of relief and joy for being back home was palpable. @dailynation @KbcRadioTaifa @TheStarKenya @citizentvkenya pic.twitter.com/qX1PBu0fZq
— ForeignAffairsKenya (@ForeignOfficeKE) May 8, 2020
Latta Mahajan is among the passengers drawn from six cities in India before they boarded much-awaited special flight KQ205 from Mumbai to Nairobi.
The passengers had to be screened as they boarded KQ flight 205 from Mumbai destined for Nairobi and also at the airport.
The evacuees will now self-quarantine in their homes under the supervision of their doctors.
The government stopped all international flights from March 25 after the country confirmed more cases.
Kenya Airways has evacuated Kenyans from London, Mumbai, and Guangzhou.
In a statement to newsrooms, Kenya Airways Group Managing Director & CEO, Allan Kilavuka said: “We are aware that many Kenyans had travelled to India for medical reasons and were stranded due to the restrictions on travel that were imposed by the different Governments. We are making these flights for them to reunite them with their loved ones and bring them home safe”.
The National Carrier has put up a raft of measures to ensure the safety of all passengers on board.
All passengers are required to undergo a COVID-19 screening and produce their clearance certificate before boarding, Sanitization of all aircraft, Providing appropriate PPEs to support passenger handling, practising no-touch techniques when administering all services related to passengers, including baggage and strict adherence to the point of entry protocols upon arrival to the various destinations.
Kenya had registered 607 cases, 197 recoveries and 29 deaths by Thursday.