Flights between Kenya and China have been suspended by a Kenyan judge who also ordered the state to prepare a plan to prevent the spread of deadly coronavirus also called COVID-19.
During court proceedings on Friday, Justice James Makau suspended the flights for 10 days and ordered the state to prepare a “contingency plan on the prevention, surveillance and response to coronavirus”.
Recall that China Southern Airlines flights on the Guangzhou-Changsha-Nairobi route had been suspended since 11 February but the suspension was lifted on Wednesday when 239 passengers arrived in Kenya.
The Law Society of Kenya then filed a case asking the court to suspend flights again which the court has obliged to with its latest ruling.
The developments comes after scores of Kenyan citizens signed two online petitions asking the government to suspend direct flights from China over fears of the outbreak of coronavirus.
According to reports, thousands of Kenyan citizens signed the petitions within hours as criticism grew after the government allowed a China Southern Airlines flight into the country on Wednesday and asked passengers to self-isolate.
Capital FM news quoted the government as saying on Thursday that it would be discriminatory to ban flights from China as many other countries had been hit by coronavirus.
Ahmed Papa, one of the people who started the petition which was addressed to the ministries of health and security, and the Kenya Airports Authority, say Kenya is not prepared to handle a coronavirus outbreak and so it should prevent all cases.
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