Passengers from 11 countries to be allowed into Kenya; flights to resume on 1st August

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Transport CS James Macharia
Transport CS James Macharia

With international flights into and out of Kenya set to resume on 1st August, the government has released a raft of measures to guide operations in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic, with arrivals from only 11 countries allowed, subject to further change. Speaking to the press at Afya House, Transport CS James Macharia said opening up the international aviation sector is key because it plays a crucial role in tourism and that it paves the way for investors to access Kenya. He said Nairobi is an investment hub in the region, and resuming international travel will allow investors into the country to set up businesses.

The decision to select a few countries for the initial flights roaster has been informed by the fact that some nations are still experiencing an upsurge or second wave of the Coronavirus. Arrivals will be allowed from China, Japan, South Korea, Ethiopia, Uganda, Rwanda, Zimbabwe, Morocco, Namibia, Switzerland and Canada. CS Macharia said these countries have mild or limited transmission cases.

He said passengers jetting into the country will have to be tested 96 hours prior to travelling, have a certificate to show for it, and if they are Covid-19 negative, don’t have a high body temperature, difficulty in breathing or other Covd-19 related symptoms, they’ll be exempt from quarantine. He said no one will be allowed to leave their points of origin if the testing period falls out of the 96 hours time frame, “You won’t be allowed to depart,” he affirmed. He added that all passengers travelling from Kenya will be required to abide by the Covid-19 prevention directives of their destination countries, and he urged those who wish to travel to be acquainted with the requirements of the nations they want to go to.

On jetting into and out of the country past curfew time, he said those heading to the airport must produce their boarding pass at roadblocks to be allowed to proceed and those who’ve come in will also have to show their legit tickets to officers in order to proceed to the hotels or residences. Drivers must also ave evidence that they’ve come from the airport.

Flight operators will be required to provide guidelines on Covid-19 infection prevention measures. On congestion at airports, CS Macharia said the Transport Ministry together with the Airports Authority and KCAA will review frequency and timing of flights to facilitate physical distancing.