Feature: Kenyans in dilemma as rising COVID-19 cases increase disease exposure chance

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, June 10, 2020
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NAIROBI, June 10 (Xinhua) -- At the outbreak of the COVID-19 in Kenya in March, Victoria Selima, a government auditor, was asked to work from home by her employer as one of the measures to curb the spread of the disease.

Selina has been working from home since then but last week, she was asked to start working from the office at least thrice a week to boost productivity.

While she has no problem working from the office as that is where she was employed to work from, the rising cases have thrown a dilemma on her path as they point to increased risk of exposure to the new coronavirus.

"I thought that the disease would have slowed down in about three months as it happened in countries like China, but cases are rising now, yet we cannot continue staying at home," she said on Tuesday.

This is a dilemma thousands of Kenyans are facing as the country progressively moves to normalize activities amid a sharp increase in infections.

From shopkeepers to commuter bus conductors and office workers, the rising cases pose a fresh dilemma, portending how closer the disease is to everyone.

Caroline Auma, a shopkeeper in Kitengela, south of Kenya's capital Nairobi, noted that she has put a handwashing point outside her shop but some people don't use it.

"I cannot force them to use, but their omission means they are exposing themselves and myself to the disease. Yet, I cannot close my shop and stay at home because the disease is spreading. I have to work to cater to the needs of my family," she observed.

For public transport vehicle operators, the dilemma stems from the fact that they deal with hundreds of people daily and some of the containment measures, in particular, such as use of mobile money were not embraced by commuters.

"No commuter pays fare using mobile money anymore. Yes, paying using coins and notes exposes one to the disease as the cases rise but we are trying harder to observe hygiene because we have to work," said Joseph Mungai, a conductor with Rembo Shuttle in Nairobi.

The dilemma hangs over the minds of the East Africa nation's citizens as they go about their businesses.

Kenya's COVID-19 curve is rising sharply across many regions of the country. The East African nation on Tuesday recorded 127 new positive cases as infection cases rose to 2,989.

Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe recently warned that the country is yet to hit the peak and that cases of new infections may stand at over 200 per day. Enditem

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