State orders matatu, boda boda passengers to wear face masks

Friday, April 3rd, 2020 00:00 |
A nursing graduate from Kabarak University Solomon Kanyi distributes free face masks to boda boda riders in Nyahururu town yesterday. He said he has decided to empower the community to fight spread of coronavirus. Photo/PD/David Macharia

In new tougher measures announced by government yesterday to curb the spread of Covid-19 disease, all public transport users will now be required to wear face masks when travelling.

Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe said the mass production of masks commenced yesterday and they would be distributed to counties through county governments, boda boda and Matatu organisations. 

 “As I directed this week that boda boda drivers and their passengers should wear face masks, all tuk tuk drivers, matatu drivers and passengers are advised to adhere this directive masks.

We will distribute them,” said Kagwe during the daily briefing on Covid-19 interventions yesterday.

 Kagwe warned that not all masks met the government specifications for safety.

Director General of Health Dr. Patrick Amoth said the approved masks were three-layered and would be manufactured locally.

“The outer layer is hydrophobic and thus water repellant. The outer layer is to repel spillage including water or blood.

The middle layer has a filter that is designed to pick any bacteria or particulate matter and stop the wearer from inhaling such matters.

The inner layer is designed to absorb sweat, spit or any secretion from the wearer.

He added that the Ministry has come up with guidelines to help health care workers and members of the families of the deceased persons on how to safely bury the bodies.

“One of the bodies has thoroughly been disinfected and put in a body bag. We are in discussion with the family and once they clear with the hospital bills will liaise with Trans Nzoia county on how best to dispose of the body,” Amoth said. 

Meanwhile, at least 4.3 million Nairobi residents will be supplied with masks, gloves, and sanitisers after the County Assembly approved Sh1 billion for combating Covid-19.

With Nairobi having the highest cases of Coronavirus cases out of the 110 confirmed by the Ministry of Health, it has been marked as the epicentre of the Covid-19.

Buy sanitisers

The fund was approved during the County Assembly Special Sitting yesterday, which debated and passed the Nairobi City County Supplementary Appropriations Bill, 2020.

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