Nairobi News


Kenyan head of Africa’s Center for Disease Control ‘mistreated’ in Germany

By Winnie Mabel October 18th, 2022 2 min read

Dr. Ahmed Ogwell, the Kenyan head of Africa’s Center for Disease Control, took to social media on October 15, 2022, to claim that he had been mistreated by immigration officials at the Frankfurt Airport in Germany.

In a series of tweets, Dr. Ogwell claimed that the officials thought he wanted to stay in Germany illegally and that his attendance at the World Health Summit had been jeopardized.

“I’ve been mistreated at Frankfurt Airport by immigration personnel who imagine I want to stay back illegally. My attendance at the World Health Summit is now in doubt. I’m happier and safer back home in Africa. They invite you then mistreat you.” Dr. Ogwell began.

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He went on to say he would stay away from non-friendly countries and said the treatment he received was the same as that he experienced during the 11th International Aerosol Conference, 2022, which was held in Athens, Greece.

“Very irritated. I’m done! German Foreign Office. It’s not ok! Even with visa, Africa is on its own. Same as for vaccines and health emergencies,” added Dr. Ogwell.

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The Frankfurt Airport responded to his complaints, apologizing for his experience.

“As an international airport, we welcome all passengers and do not tolerate any form of discrimination or racism. We would like to have more information about this incident.

Therefore, we kindly ask that you send us a detailed account of the incident, including the time and your routing…because the immigration checks are operated by German Federal Police, we also recommend sending them your feedback,” the Airport responded to Dr. Ogwell.

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However, on October 17, 2022, Dr. Ogwell returned to Twitter to announce that he had returned to Africa safely- the home of the most resilient human beings he knew.

“From the Frankfurt Airport misadventures, I share some lessons: Don’t reduce your dignity to fit someone else’s prejudices- you’ll be feeding a wolf that will devour you someday.

A visa often means little when you are carrying an African passport- regular or diplomatic. Very many decent people are mistreated every day and don’t have the microphone to let the world know- I empathize with all of you, and home is best. Mama Africa remains my refuge (and 1.5 billion others!), so I must take care of her. And so should you,” concluded Dr. Ogwell.

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