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Covid-19 surveillance on Kenya-Tanzania border enhanced

The government has enhanced Covid-19 surveillance along the border with Tanzania in an effort to curtail the spread of the deadly disease.

Kwale County Commissioner Mr. Joseph Kanyiri said surveillance has been up-scaled in all official border points of entry and exit in a bid to  the spread of the virus.

Speaking to KNA in his office on Tuesday, Kanyiri said the heightened surveillance comes in the backdrop of reports of a surge in Covid-19 infections and deaths in the neighbouring country.

He said health personnel will be increasing security for visitors entering the country and is also boosting checks on routes from the East Africa nation that has reported a spike in Covid-19 cases and deaths.

The administrator said the border points are ‘high-risk areas’ and added entry and exit will only be through the gazetted areas which have hand hygiene stations.

He said the border communities and travelers are particularly vulnerable to the threat posed by the pandemic as a result of travel, transportation and trade connections and should minimize cross-border movement.

“We are asking the border communities to support the public health measures to contain Covid-19 and that anyone found using undesignated places will be dealt with,” he said.  “We are doing everything possible to combat the spread of the coronavirus pandemic into our side of the border,” he added.

He said a high level team comprised of officials from the National Border Management Committee and Ministry of Health on Monday toured the Lunga Lunga sub-county that borders Tanzania to assess the level of preparedness.

He said the high level delegation is going around border areas to check on the pandemic preparedness and response intervention measures in place.

The county chief said the security agencies will be manning all the entry points into the country and will be on the lookout for any vehicle and people crossing from the neighbouring country.

He said the security agencies would deal firmly with people who will resort to using informal and unregulated crossing points to beat the new measures aimed at reducing the risk of Covid-19 transmission.

by Hussein Abdullahi

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