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February 21, 2018

Chikungunya: Locals say spray has failed

Mombasa governor Hassan Joho (Centre) accompanied by other county health staffs during the launch of fogging machines on January 8. /JOHN CHESOLI
Mombasa governor Hassan Joho (Centre) accompanied by other county health staffs during the launch of fogging machines on January 8. /JOHN CHESOLI

The Sh15 million fogging machines deployed by the Mombasa government early this month to get rid of mosquitoes are ineffective, residents have said.

The county has been fighting an outbreak of the chikungunya virus, which is spread by mosquitoes. On January 9, the county presented five fogging machines, a technology that Governor Hassan Joho said was adopted from Malaysia to control the outbreak.

Joho had said the machines would be taken round the six subcounties to spray and eliminate chikungunya. 

“These machines are modern and sophisticated. If we take them to the villages, we are assured of positive results,” he had said

But most residents have said purchase of the machines was a waste. Likoni resident Hamisi Tunza on Tuesday said the machines are useless as the chemicals evaporate, while the mosquitoes still bother residents.

“The machines do not have a positive effect. The fog only drives the mosquitoes away for a short time. The government should look for a lasting solution,” he said. Tunza also said residents fear the fog might cause 

health problems.

Joho had reassured residents that the fog from the machines would not result in health problems. “The smoke is just like having Doom sprayed in your house, the effect is the same,” 

he said.

Resident Hamisi Omar congratulated the county government, saying it is doing its best to ensure chikungunya

 is contained. 

“The disease has been contained. The county government should increase those services to save the society,” he said.

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