Nairobi News


City Market to be closed for fumigation, as City Hall steps up Covid-19 screening

City Market will on Tuesday be closed for fumigation as Nairobi County steps up efforts in battling the spread of the deadly coronavirus as the country’s positive cases clocked 15 on Monday.

The exercise, which was launched last week, has seen a number of locations within the city county fumigated and more than 12, 500 individuals screened for the novel coronavirus.

The 12,590 individuals screened included 5,100 adults, 5,515 children and 3,477 youths with only two individuals found with elevated temperatures.

City Hall Health Executive Hitan Majevdia said they issued a closure notice to hundreds of traders in the popular market ahead of the fumigation which will begin early on Tuesday morning.

“We have already told them we will fumigate the place in the morning and so they will not open their stalls during the time and we have already given them a notice to close for a day,” Majevdia said.

He said the exercise will be carried out by officers from the county’s public health department who carried out a dry run at the facility on Monday.

Fumigation within the Central Business District and its environs is in its second week. In the city centre, GPO bus stop, public resting areas around Hilton Hotel, Aga Khan Walk, National Archives, Jeevanjee Gardens, Hakati Road, Ronald Ngala Street and Mfangano Lane were already fumigated.

Markets such as Gikomba, Muthurwa and Wakulima have also been fumigated as well as Kencom Bus Stage, Khoja and Tom Mboya Stages and Railways bus and train terminus.

Nairobi County public health deputy director Wilson Langat said the exercise will be taking place in the morning hours as early as 8am to avoid disruptions of businesses.

“We have observed that in the early hours, not so many activities are taking place unlike late in the day. As a result, we have decided to conduct the fumigation in the morning hours going forward,” said Langat.

“The response we got was positive as the traders were pleased that the government were taking an initiative to help curb the spread of covid-19. They asked us to visit the markets more often until the virus is contained,” he added.

The officer said they have made another request for more chemicals so as to proceed with the process. Last week, the Ministry of Health gave out 700 litres of disinfectants.

Langat added that the county government has also put in place a number of washing points in city markets for traders to wash their hands with soap and water so as to observe proper hygiene.

However, he stated the county did not carry out free public screening within the CBD as the public health officers were awaiting for more Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) from Health Ministry.

“We had ordered for more PPE so that we have additional number of health workers and volunteers assisting in the public screening,” he said.

Last week, City Hall said at least 675 health workers from 200 health centres had been trained on preventative measures against Covid-19 who together with community volunteers have also been sensitizing the city residents back in the wards on preventative measures against the coronavirus.