Six thousand Ugandan herders among 300,000 screened for Covid-19 in Turkana

A section of members of the Turkana county Covid-19 emergency response Committee during a meeting at Ekaales center in Lodwar 
Photograph by Peter Gitonga/KNA

A total 6,000 nomadic pastoralists from neighbouring Uganda are among 300,000 people in Turkana County screened for Covid-19.

Speaking during the county Covid-19 emergency response Committee meeting held at Ekaales center in Lodwar, newly appointed County Executive Committee member for Agriculture, Pastoral economy and Fisheries Philip Aemun said more than 6,000 nomadic pastoralists families from the neighbouring Uganda had crossed into Turkana using the Loima border corridor in search of water and pasture for their cattle.

“The ministry speedily responded by ensuring the presence of animal disease surveillance teams to handle the possible cross-infection of animal diseases and at the same time involved officers from the department of health to screen for Covid-19,” he said.

Turkana central sub county police commander David Mburukwa said that his officers will start enforcing the face mask requirements with renewed vigour.

It was noted that residents had slowly relaxed the precautionary measures. 

“We shall be tougher on those flouting the rule which is a critical way of staying safe from Covid-19 disease,” Mburukwa said.

The committee also resolved that all truck drivers must have a valid Covid-19 test certificate before they can be allowed to enter Turkana County through Kainuk.

Chief Officer for Health Dr. Roberts Abok said the department had formally received the applicable protocol for control of Covid-19 at ground crossing and along the transport corridors from the Ministry of Health for adoption and implementation.