Published On: Tue, Mar 30th, 2021

Kenya must impose tougher restrictions on Tourists from Covid 19 infested countries to save lives

Middle classes, Celebrities and wealthy foreigners are leaving their countries where lockdown measures supported with medical infrastructure and digital technology are being developed rapidly ,to parts of the world like Kenya, where they believe enforcement is lax or non existent  and they can do whatever they are not able to do in their own countries . This is a form of leisure colonisation  exacerbated by revenue desperation for economies like Kenya. This is wrong and must be stopped immediately as the long term impact will be unimaginable. 

Hotels in Lamu are recording over 80% occupancy rates with rooms going for about $270 a night.  Whilst Lamu and Kenyan Coast have always been popular with tourists, the recent demand is driven by lockdown in bigger economies in Europe and North America and the obvious lack of regulations and strategy to protect the locals from the super spreaders. For a tourists keen to visit KENYA from the UK for example, you only need to show a negative Covid test and you don’t need to quarantine.

The rise in COVID 19 cases in my view, no need for science here can be attributed to these travellers and only Kenyans will suffer, for when the situation gets worse, the tourists will jet off to their countries where they can access free healthcare, after infecting Kenyans where access to quality healthcare is only a dream for the rich.

Official reports on latest covid cases estimates over 125,000 Kenyans have tested positive and more than 2000 have died as are result of COVID 19. This spike in cases caused the Government to introduce restrictions in key parts of the country including the capital Nairobi. In his address to the Nation last Friday President Kenyatta said the decision to restriction is not taken lightly and will certainly come at cost for many, saying, ” Seventy percent of Kenya’s reported cases of COVID-19 have been recorded in the counties of Nairobi, Kajiado, Machakos, Kiambu and Nakuru,” he said. “These counties are individually and collectively declared a disease-infected area. That there shall be a cessation of all movement by road, rail or air into and out of the disease-infected areas as one zoned area.”

What the address and the subsequent statements from the various ministries didn’t say, was the cause of the recent rise in the number of cases in the country. Whilst publications like the Economists, The Times newspaper UK and others have reported a rising demand for travel to Kenya’s coast by international travellers escaping lockdown in their own countries  e.g the UK, Italy, the US and many others where COVID cases and fatalities are beyond control, Kenya in desperation to lift the Tourism sector which was badly hit by COVID 19 have ignored these articles and allowed travellers from disease infested Europe and North Africa to flock to the country freely. A recent report by the Independent locals in places like Lamu, Malindi or Diani can hardly get apartments due to demand as tourists wait out the pandemic in sunny and sand.

 

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Kenya must impose tougher restrictions on Tourists from Covid 19 infested countries to save lives
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