Covid-19: Why 32 quarantined in Mandera were released

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1Some of the facilities at the Mandera County Referral Hospital's Intensive Care Unit (ICU) as pictured on April 1, 2020. PHOTO | MANASE OTSIALO

An administrator in Mandera South says he was forced to release 32 people from quarantine in Elwak town after it emerged they were being held under deplorable conditions.

Deputy County Commissioner Abdikarim Dubat told the Nation on Thursday that the decision was reached after they found out that the people lacked essential services.

“We were holding these people because of the curfew since they arrived at Elwak town last week. With the county government suspecting that the bus had come from Nairobi, we were pushed to place the group into forced quarantine,” he said.

But he added, “We don’t have a gazetted quarantine facility in Elwak and still, there is nothing we can use to hold people under medical observation.”

SUFFERING

The administrator maintained that he could not oversee a process that would subject people to suffering.

“These people were not being given food. There were no toilets and water at the county offices where they were being held,” he said.

“There were no plans to provide anything that was needed. That forced us to set them free.”

NO SYMPTOMS

According to Mr Dubat, none of the 32 travellers showed any symptoms of the deadly Covid-19 disease.

He said the group had been screened at Garissa, Wajir, Kutolo and Elwak.

“Before setting them free, we gathered all the necessary information in case any case arose among them,” he said.

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