Over 100 students from Rapogi School in Uriri in Migori have been diagnosed with flu-like symptoms, sending panic at the institution.
Confirming the incident, the senior principal Mr Erastus Nyagwa said the students showing signs of dry cough and flu were taken to various hospitals within the county for further tests and treatment.
He said Covid-19 has been ruled out after tests conducted returned negative. It was however feared it could suspected influenza outbreak.
However, two students who were diagnosed with malaria were admitted at St Joseph’s Ombo hospital as the entire school staff and students remained under observation.
Mr Nyagwa is appealing to other schools to take precautions to avert such an outbreak.
With the cold season setting in, Kenyans have lately been complaining of suffering serious symptoms of the flu including high fever, cough, sore throat, watery eyes, headaches and body aches.
The flu (influenza in full) is different from a cold and can cause mild to severe illness and death.
Most people who get the flu recover in a few days to less than two weeks, but some people develop complications (such as pneumonia), some of which can be life-threatening.
Meanwhile, learning at the Sacred Heart Mukumu Girls in Kakamega County has fully resumed with over 1800 out of 2028 learners having reported back.
School Principal Jane Mmbone told a multi-agency team led by the Western Regional Commissioner Samuel Irungu Macharia that some of the students, especially from form one and two had sought transfer to other schools while a smaller number were still expected to report to school.
The multi-agency team was tasked to provide recommendations for improved sanitation at the institution, has however declared that there was no new disease outbreak at the institution, contrary to information circulating on social media.
Speaking to the media after an extensive tour of the school accompanied by members of the multi-agency team among them officials from the Ministry of water, Public health, parents’ representatives and the Principal, the RC told off those peddling lies about the school and asked them to let students concentrate on their studies.
The RC however asked parents to continue communicating with the school management about the welfare of their children and called for support from all stakeholders to ensure smooth running of learning activities at the school.
Sacred Heart Mukumu girls was closed for about a month in April after four students and a teacher died following a disease outbreak.
Public health officials diagnosed salmonella typhii (a bacteria that causes typhoid) and amebiasis (a parasitic infection of the intestines that causes stomach pain and diarrhea).
Irungu said the school has been connected to a new water supply by the Lake Victoria North Water Works Development Agency (LVNWWDA), new water purification and chlorination plant nearing completion and establishment of additional hand washing points.
“This is meant to provide safe drinking water for the students, the water which was previously stored by the school was also flashed out, with a borehole now sunk to provide additional water to the institution,” he added.
“Corrective measures recommended by the multi-agency team had been put in place, including the renovation of the food store to increase ventilation and the improvement of the flooring in the store.
“New maize stock was also brought in, which was dried for four days to ensure there was no moisture before storing,” he added.
Weighing in on the 100 per cent transition to secondary education, the Regional Commissioner noted that it came with challenges among them congestion in classrooms, dormitories and exerted pressure on the school sewage system.
He however, assured that the government was committed to improving infrastructure in schools through working in collaboration with Non- Governmental Organization (NGOs) and other partners to improve infrastructure and sanitation in schools.
“This includes the Water Resource Management Authority working in partnership with The Water Project and Friends of Timothy to provide water in schools in Mumias West, East and Navokholo sub-counties” he noted.
Reporting by Celestine Mwango and KNA