A hundred and forty eight people in Siaya county believed to have come in close contact with a Catholic priest who tested positive for coronavirus have been isolated, Governor Cornel Rasanga said Thursday.
Mr Rasanga said the additional number includes 40 people tracked down by the county emergency response team, which he chairs with County Commissioner Michael ole Tialal.
Fr Francis Oduor was forced into quarantine by authorities in Nairobi.
The governor added that the county has received non pharmaceutical items from Kenya Medical Supplies Agency, including 4,000 bottles of sanitisers, gloves, gumboots and gowns.
By Wednesday, eight suspected cases had tested negative for Covid-19.
“Results for two more people who were tested are still pending,” Mr Rasanga said.
The governor added that screening is on and residents continue to volunteer for tests.
He said the level of consciousness is high following the incident, and that locals have been reporting suspected cases or people who have been outside the country in the recent past.
Mr Rasanga said the isolation unit at Bondo Hospital is 90 per cent complete, even as he emphasised the need to observe personal hygiene, especially washing hands and not touching the face.
Meanwhile, East African Legislative Assembly MP Oburu Oginga has said the regional parliament would push governments and donors to provide more funds to fight the deadly virus.
Dr Oginga said citizens in border regions are at high risk of contracting Covid-19.
Dr Oginga has been dispatched to western region border counties by the assembly to assess Covid-19 preparedness and inherent challenges.
He said he would compile a report to be tabled at the Arusha-based assembly soon.
Dr Oginga lauded measures put in place by county governments to fight the disease.
“The region has in the past been hit by small pox and other diseases but received little support from government. Being a transit hub, the region should be treated like any other entry point,” he said after meeting Busia Deputy Governor and acting Health executive Moses Mulomi.
He said diseases like cholera and HIV/Aids were downplayed by authorities, leading to deaths.
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Report by Dickens Wasonga, Gaitano Pessa and Shaban Makokha