Maersk donates Sh10.6m worth of PPEs to KPA staff
Hillary Mageka @hillarymageka
Maersk Kenya, an integrated container logistics company has spent at least Sh10.6 million to acquire Personal Protecting Equipment (PPE) for the Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) staff in a move meant to curb the spread of the deadly COVID-19 pandemic.
To compliment government’s efforts, Maersk-one of the biggest users of the Port of Mombasa- has so far supplied KPA team with critical items, ranging from hand sanitizers, protective face masks and disposable overalls.
In addition to, disposable medical gloves, infrared thermometers and protective eye wears.
In an interview with People daily, the Maersk’s East Africa Port Captain Sharon Delphine said the company is committed to continue supporting the Port of Mombasa, in a bid to ensure business continuity.
“In line with our mission connecting and simplifying trade to help our customers grow and thrive.
We are very committed in ensuring that KPA keep essential supply chains moving across Kenya and neighboring countries, as Mombasa is a gateway to East Africa,” Delphine said.
As part of the donation to the East Africa’s largest port, she said “another batch of the donation including 12,000 pieces of protective face masks is expected to arrive from South Africa in a few weeks.
At the initial stage of the global pandemic in Kenya, back in March, tens of KPA staff in Mombasa got infected- necessitating drastic measures by the National Government, which included a gradual downscale of workers.
While the consignment from Maersk, KPA Chairman (Rtd) General Joseph Kibwana said as an organization they were grateful for the kind gesture.
“We are truly grateful for this kind gesture by Maersk, these items will go along way to ensure our workers are protected as they discharge their duties,” Kibwana said.
The chairman noted that the move by Maersk “is a true testament of the solid relationship that exists between the two organizations.”
KPA has since rolled out strict mandatory procedures for ship crew and vessels, to ensure the disease is not exported in the course of carrying out maritime trade.
According to KPA Chairman, the measures have proven effective because since the advent of the pandemic, no ship crew has been found to be positive the virus.
Meanwhile, the port has since received containership Ono, a pioneer vessel from the recently launched Jeddex line of the CMA CGM group- a French container transportation and shipping company.
The new service line will be offering a direct service between Kenya, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Somalia by deploying four dedicated vessels on a weekly basis.
“At the moment, the Port handles an average of 34 Million tons as total throughput a year and container traffic of 1.4 Million TEUs.
As KPA, we look forward to more cooperation with a view to supporting efficiency and business growth,” KPA acting managing Director Eng. Rashid Salim said during the launch of the new service.
Exports from Mombasa will benefit by connecting to the Global Network via Jeddah offering transit times to European hubs -Genoa in 20 days, Rotterdam in 27 days, Fos-sur-Mer in 26 days and Antwerp in 33 days.