NAIROBI, Kenya, May 6 – Kenya Ports Authority has reduced the number of workers at the port from 6,200 to 4,000, a number that could go much lower, in observance with the social distancing measure aimed at containing the spread of the coronavirus.
Transport Cabinet Secretary James Macharia says the government agency is aiming at reducing the number to 3,500 staffers, who are charged with core functions.
He explained that those who are left at the port will mainly be those charged with operations of the port, such as ensuring incoming cargo is offloaded, while outgoing ships are loaded with cargo.
The CS assured that those working from home will be paid by the Authority.
“During the period that they will be working from home, we shall pay them because it is not their fault that we have this situation,” he said.
The move is expected to combat the spread of the virus at the state agency, where cases of the coronavirus have been reported among employees.
On April 14, the Agency announced that 7 of its employees had tested positive, while 2 had died.
“Any auxiliary services which are not critical to the port should stay at home. Where possible, they should take leave,” the CS added.
Macharia spoke during the coronavirus daily brief, where the Cabinet Secretary at the Ministry of Health announced an increase in the number of cases by 42 in the last 24 hours to bring the total count to 582 across the country.