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Fumigation starts in Nairobi to curb coronavirus spread

Thursday March 19 2020
By COLLINS OMULO

Nairobi County health officials have stared fumigating the central business district (CBD) as part of measures to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus (Covid-19).

The fumigation started Thursday morning at the General Post Office (GPO) before moving to areas around the Hilton Hotel, Kencom bus stage and Aga Khan Walk.

Nairobi County Health Deputy Director Wilson Langat said that a total of 215 county health officers are involved in the exercise, which targets public resting furniture, bus stops, markets and other areas with high social gatherings.

HOT SPOTS

“We will do our best to ensure that we disinfect and control the spread of the coronavirus especially in the CBD. We have several hotspots including where there are public resting seats, bus stations and markets,” said Mr Langat.

“We have over 200 health officers. All those on leave were recalled and we are also targeting to bring on board those officers who recently retired to join us in the exercise,” he said.

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OFFICERS RECALLED

Nairobi County Health Services Executive Hitan Majevdia on Wednesday recalled all health officers who were on leave for the fumigation.

“All medical officers are expected back at their work stations within 24 hours from today. Attached please find a copy of a letter recalling all health officers on leave back to the office,” read the letter, signed by Mr Majevdia dated March 18, 2020.

Mr Langat appealed to matatu operators to provide sanitisers and also disinfect their vehicles before allowing passengers to board.

“We are also appealing to the general public not to panic but exercise good hygiene by washing their hands using running water and soap. Sanitisers are just for use in cases where there is no running water and soap,” he said.

CHLORINE

Starehe Sub-County Health Officer Charles Kibue said they are using chlorine for the fumigation, adding that the team is currently targeting places where people usually assemble, markets like Muthurwa, and crowded bus stations like Tea Room, before moving to buildings in the city.

“We want to carry out the exercise for at least 14 days. We have health officers from the entire county and we have started from the CBD because it has a lot of people in transit, then we will move out to other areas,” said Mr Kibue.

He said that they will also sensitise the public about the novel coronavirus as a way of reducing fear and panic.

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