17-01-2022 by Freddie del Curatolo
Every day two hundred foreigners infected in Kenya, although almost all asymptomatic (but there are still cases of Italians in the hospital, after the piles of parties at the end of the year) and every day cases fake jabs or vaccinations certificates discovered by the Kenyan authorities. For fraudsters very severe penalties and for laboratories that have issued false certificates the closure and revocation of licenses.
This happens with the new year in the country and this is the most striking picture of a situation that is not as serious as some predicted for sub-Saharan Africa, but at the same time it is worrying for the credibility that Kenya is unable to sustain with foreign nations that could and should reopen to tourism (and not only, see the case of Dubai and the United Arab Emirates, which have completely closed their airspace).
During the weekend, the percentage of positives compared to the number of swabs was around eleven percent, with about 10 thousand swabs per day analyzed.
The distribution of positive cases indicates 4 Kenyan citizens and one foreigner for every five found positive to the swab and largely affected by the variant omicron.
This variant is now known to be very contagious but, even and especially at the equator, coinciding with the hot season, not as worrying as the Delta was a few months ago.
Yesterday, Sunday, January 15, the foreigners affected by the virus were 176 throughout the country, compared to 859 Kenyans. In return, another 1155 have recovered from the disease, of which 113 have been discharged from health facilities.
There was only one official death, with nine others coming from late reports,
Health Minister Mutahi Kagwe confirmed that across Kenya there are only 48 patients admitted to intensive care, many of them with previous illnesses, with another 257 still needing oxygen therapy, although admitted to general wards and support facilities.
The total vaccinated meanwhile rises to 10 million 974 thousand. In the early days of the year, vaccinations have gone quite slowly: those vaccinated with two doses (Pfizer, AstraZeneca and Modern) are 4 million and 704 thousand, while those who have received only the first dose are about 6 million and 165 thousand. It follows that 58 percent of those who received the first dose has already been fully vaccinated and after six months can receive the booster, as some thousands of citizens and residents have already begun to do since last January 6.
Meanwhile, cases of false negative Covid-19 results are discovered every day, especially in outbound travelers from Kenya. On Saturday another 12 people were arrested at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) after producing fake certificates while trying to travel to Saudi Arabia. The government, in concert with the airlines, is beginning to screen all travelers and already has a mapping of suspicious labs. As well as is able to perform quick random swabs.
A lab in Nairobi is already under investigation by the Directorate of Criminal Investigation, for issuing fake TT (Trusted Traveler) QR codes.
Minister Kagwe has confirmed that tests from untrustworthy private laboratories will no longer be accepted and that he wants to avoid any kind of shady business involving the alteration of results. This obviously concerns vaccines as well. It is known that there have been episodes of corruption (a phenomenon unfortunately also found in Italy) that also concern the administration of doses in order to obtain the vaccine passport, with users who have avoided being injected with the vaccine, paying the health workers.
Investigations are ongoing and certainly several facilities and private citizens will be identified and punished. Also because because of these imbeciles who do not even have the courage of their actions in the light of day, Kenya and its economy are likely to have serious and repeated damage, such as not getting the reopening to travel by nations such as Italy.
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