NAIROBI, Kenya, May 21- As the country heightens the war against the COVID-19 pandemic, the National Police Service continues to receive support from various stakeholders, in order to ensure officers are not exposed to infections.
The latest support came from the National Gun Owners Association (NGAO) which has partnered with the Ministry of Health to train nearly 2,000 police officers on measures they should deploy while executing their duties, particularly in the hotspot areas.
The association’s chairperson Anthony Wahome on Thursday pointed out that like healthcare workers, police are equally prone to the pandemic due to the nature of their job.
“After health care workers, they (police officers) are on the frontline and the most exposed,” he said.
He was speaking at Pangani Police Station, where he handed over a sanitization booth donated by the association members- in honour of the late Captain Akber Sumra, a pilot who died in a plane crash in Maasai Mara.
“It has ten nozzles spraying on someone at the same time. It is able to spray the entire body,” said Captain Mohamed Sumra, a brother to the deceased.
The sanitization booth was unveiled by Deputy Inspector General of Police Edward Mbugua- who has called on other members of the public to support the police service.
Though officers have been given the basic Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), he said “we still need more.”
Mbugua has warned of tough action against people flouting the curfew orders.
He said authorities continue to encounter people not providing essential services as late as 8 p.m while many others are not following the safety measures issued by the Ministry of Health.
“Some members of the public are not taking this [matter] seriously. If they are told to wear a mask, they do, but they are not wearing it rightly. Some of them are contravening the curfew orders…when we get them, we will arrest them,” he said.
Infections in the country have been increasing daily, since mid-March when the first case was confirmed on a student who had arrived in from the US through the UK.
COVID-19 cases in Kenya rose to 1,029 Wednesday, crossing the 1000-mark even as the government intensified efforts to prevent a further spread of the infections nationally.
Among the measures in place to combat the infections is a dusk to dawn curfew imposed by President Uhuru Kenyatta, countrywide, and cessation of movement in and out of Eastleigh, a densely populated suburb in Nairobi, Mombasa’s Old Town area and Mandera in northern Kenya that borders with Somalia.
Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe has since announced the extension of the lockdown in Old Town and Eastleigh due to the high number of cases.