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Murang’a residents warned of defying directives to contain covid-19

The Suba North Legislator, Millie Odhiambo (In blue dress) and the Homa Bay County Commissioner, Yatich Kipkemei (on her right) during a tour of the proposed site for construction of police housing unit and sub County Headquarters on Monday March 16, 2020. Photo by Davis Langat/KNA.

The  Murang’a County Commissioner (CC), Mohammed Barre   on  Monday  warned residents who are ignoring directives aimed at containing spread of coronavirus of dire consequences.

Barre  noted with concern that some residents are still attending burials and other social gathering without taking laid down precautions.

Since  last week, he said, security officers were forced to disperse several burial gatherings which were attended by more people than the number required.

“It’s clear that the government has said burials to be attended by not more than 15 people, but its worrying to see funerals being attended by even 200 or more people. We will not tolerate this,” warned the CC.

He asked bereaved families to avoid gathering, saying it will be a disaster if people will contract the disease while in a ceremony of burying a relative.

Barre further said there are also some residents who hide and go to bars, saying people are only allowed to buy liquor and then go and take them at their homes.

“No one is allowed to sit and take liquor in any bar. This also applies to hotels. Let people buy the drinks they want and get to their homes,” he added.

The CC observed that some people have resorted manufacturing of illicit brews at their homes, saying security officers will not tolerate such practices.

“We have reports that some people are now manufacturing illicit brews at their homes and this poses health risks to consumers. We will continue doing crackdown of people perpetuating this business,” added Barre.

Meanwhile, Barre  revealed that in the County there are 33 people who have been put on quarantine after they interacted with relatives who arrived from abroad.

He expressed concerns over visitors coming from overseas and then travel and mingle with their relatives without first having a self-quarantine.

The Administrator further warned parents leaving their children to engage in sporting activities at playgrounds, saying the children are also restricted from gathering.

“The restrictions are also affecting school-going children who are now at home. They are supposed to remain in their homes and not to gather at playgrounds and swimming pools,” posed Barre.

At  the same time, Police in Homa Bay County have been challenged to intensify patrols in all roads to ensure that Public Service Vehicles comply with directives issued by the government.

This  follows the directive issued by the national government that all public service vehicles to carry at least eight passengers in 14 seater matatu.

The County Commissioner (CC), David Kipkemei said that there were some vehicles in the county which defied a directive by Health Cabinet  Secretary, Mutahi Kagwe on social distancing to prevent COVID-19.

Kipkemei said he has received complaints that some Toyota probox operators were carrying excess passengers with some being packed in the boots and accused the operators of putting the passengers’ lives at risk of contracting coronavirus.

He ordered police to ensure that no vehicle carries passengers that exceed the number set by the government.

“I hereby order police to arrest any driver who violates the order of limiting the number of passengers,” Kipkemei said. He also advised residents not to board already full vehicles.

Speaking  to KNA  at  Kabunde, the county commissioner who was accompanied by the County Executive Committee member  for Health, Prof. Richard Muga and the County Secretary, Isaiah Ogwe  called on all the Deputy County  Comissioners to be vigilant in their areas of jurisdictions and ensure that all residents comply with both the county and national government rule.

He further warned the people against false communications through the social media adding that all communication concerning coronavirus in the county is to be handled by Prof. Richard Muga.

On  his part, Muga said the KEMRI in Kisumu will assist in specimen tests, adding that health workers will be given additional masks due to their vulnerability.

The county secretary called on the traders to maintain high standards of cleanliness in their daily business activities, saying that they have no intention of closing the markets.


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