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POOR SANITATION

12 escape from Covid-19 centre near Tanzania

Police and guards looked the other way.

In Summary

•According to a report at Isebania police post under OB number 30/22/5/2020, reported over eight hours after the last escapee left the facility, 20 people had been taken into quarantine at the facility.

•Migori health executive Isca Oluoch and Mabera police boss Cleti Kimaiyo confirmed the incident on phone on Sunday.

A view of Isebania town.
A view of Isebania town.
Image: File

Poor sanitation at St Mary’s Mabera Secondary School, a Covid-19 isolation centre used by the Migori County Government, has been blamed for the escape of quarantined people.

The centre is located in Kuria West sub-county near the Tanzanian border and has recorded three cases of Covid-19.

 

Between Thursday night and Friday morning, 12 quarantined people escaped from the centre.

 
 

According to a report at Isebania Police Post under OB number 30/22/5/2020 reported over eight hours after the last escapee left the facility, 20 people had been quarantined at the facility.

David Marwa Ikarai, a clinical officer who made the report, said only two people of the 20, Erick Otieno, 28, and Wycliffe Opombe, 32, gave their details while the rest refused.

“Twelve of them with their unknown identities had escaped to unknown destination. Scene visited by police and search is underway,” the report stated.

Migori health executive Isca Oluoch and Mabera police boss Cleti Kimaiyo confirmed the incident on phone on Sunday.

 

“So far nobody has been traced,” Kimayo said and refused to comment on status of eight others who had escaped earlier on May 13 or on corruption allegations by police.

The two said attempt to retrace the escapees is ongoing.

 

“Those who escaped were arrested on May 19 at a Migori town hotel and their details entered at Migori police station. We believe they colluded with police for them to refuse to give their details at the center so that they escape. Police should release names entered at Migori police to trace the escapees,” a medic at the facility who spoke to the Star on condition of anonymity, said.

One of those who were initially arrested at the hotel said police demanded bribes.

“During the arrest several people paid bribes to be released, when it reached close to midnight after the arrest, we were taken to the quarantine centre as we did not have money,” one of the suspects said.

Reports indicate that police and guards at the facility looked the other way as the group escaped for hours, and delayed relaying report for more hours.

Earlier at the centre, people complained of overcrowding, no fumigation in rooms, no sanitizations and no protective gears despite the centre having recorded three positive cases.

"Government said we were to be given food, but there is no food and nobody is willing to sell us food," a patient said.

The institution is manned by two watchmen and two police officers.