Eldoret: Thursday 26th March 2020
Ladies and Gentlemen,
As you are all well aware, multiple cases of Corona Virus have been confirmed in Kenya since the first case tested positive for COVID-19 on Friday, March 6, 2020 and a number of people held on quarantine in the Government isolation centre in Nairobi.
The eight (8) County Governments of the North Rift Economic Bloc (NOREB) have deployed County protocols that detail a raft of preventive and containment measures, response mechanisms and directives. Following the meeting that we held last week where resolutions and directives on the prevention of COVID-19 were issued, we have today met to follow up on compliance of these measures, even as we continue to align and cascade the National Government containment protocols as outlined by H.E President Uhuru Kenyatta.
We are committed to ensuring these directives are followed by everyone residing within the region, and to expanding the measures to cover sectors and operations that are under devolved functions.
The following is progress so far registered and further directives.
MTRH as a COVID-19 testing and training center – The process of upgrading the ROCHE Machine testing equipment at MTRH/AMPATH Centre and training of personnel is complete. In 10 days, MTRH will have the capacity to test 960 samples in an 8 hour shift. We thank the National Government for approving MTRH as a COVID-19 testing and training center.
We urge the National Government through the National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB) to begin the mobilization of foodstuff to Arid and Semi Arid areas in readiness to support communities living in these regions.
We advise all our residents to continue to STAY AT HOME.
In this regard, we notify all our residents that the 7:00 PM to 5:00 AM curfew will be strictly enforced beginning Friday 27th March 2020 at 7:00PM.
The Departments of Health in our respective member Counties continue with training and public health sensitizing efforts.
MTRH now has a core team of well trained personnel who continue to carry out trainings and sensitizations. So far, County Health Personnel, the Police Service and the National Government Administration Officers have been trained. Plans are underway to train healthcare workers in privately owned health facilities.
We call upon the National Government to expedite the distribution of certified PPEs and other COVID-19 prevention and management essentials.
The NOREB Health Sector Committee is in touch with Development partners towards sourcing of additional support towards the containment and management of COVID-19.
We urge the business community, State Agencies and Non-Governmental bodies to continue rendering their support towards efforts to contain the pandemic and to sustain our population through this period.
The regional COVID-19 taskforce continues to implement containment measures and is actively implementing screening across the region. All evaluated patients who met case definition for COVID-19 have been placed in self-quarantine, while all samples taken for testing in the region have so far returned negative results.
Private health facilities are called upon to correctly declare the available isolation capacities and cooperate with County Government officials in the inspection and verification of these important facilities within their establishments.
All doctors on training are hereby directed to report to their respective Counties for deployment, while those in training in Moi University to report to the MTRH with immediate effect.
MTRH and County Governments have made a total closure of morgue facilities and the directive to conduct interments within 24 hours is being adhered to. Police case bodies should be dispensed with within 48 hours, or otherwise determined on a case to case basis.
Private hospitals with farewell homes are directed to immediately comply with the directive to close all morgues or face administrative action and other sanctions.
Although there is marked improvement in observing hand sanitizing, we hereby reiterate to all residents of the NOREB region to continue strictly observing personal hygiene by regular hand washing with soap for at least 20 seconds and being in possession of clean handkerchiefs at all times. They are also instructed to cover their mouths with their elbows when coughing or sneezing.
All bodaboda operators are hereby directed to fully comply with hand sanitization, social distancing at termini and stick to carrying one passenger at a time, failure to which the region will, in consultation with National Government will look into suspending this mode of transport within the region.
The law enforcement officers remain vigilant to ensure bars and nightclubs remain closed.
We reiterate that all public gatherings in the region including political gatherings, religious congregations, sports activities, business fairs and social gatherings remain banned.
While we thank our residents and the business community for complying with previous directives, we wish to point out that there is still much to be done to keep the COVID-19 at bay. Let us continue perfecting all the measures that have been outlined so that we keep everyone safe.
Unless otherwise communicated, residents are urged to continue complying with directives that were given earlier.
We call upon each one of us to remember that safety at this critical time begins with you. Let us each one of us do their part in keeping this pandemic that has invaded the world and our nation at bay. Thank you and God bless you.
H.E. Jackson K. Arap Mandago EGH-Uasin Gishu County – NOREB Interim Chair
H.E Stanley Kiptis –Baringo County
H.E Alex Tolgos EGH – Elgeyo Marakwet County
H.E Moses Lenolkulal – Samburu County
H.E Patrick Khaemba _ Trans Nzoia County
H.E Stephen Sang – Nandi County
H.E Prof. John Lonyangapuo – West Pokot County
H.E Josephat Nanok – Turkana County
Hon. Joseph Lagat-Chairman, Board of Management, MTRH
Dr. Wilson K. Aruasa MBS-CEO MTRH