The County Government of Kakamega and the National Government have established a multi-agency forum to combat the dreaded coronavirus through prevention and mitigation efforts.

The team co-chaired by H.E. the governor Hon. FCPA Wycliffe Ambetsa Oparanya and County Commissioner, madam Pauline Dola will shortly develop a comprehensive strategy and plan involving key players from both levels of Government.

Addressing members of the forum today during its inaugural meeting at the County Headquarters, Chambers hall, CECM for Health, madam Rachel Okumu who stood in for the governor, called for calm as the County awaits the results from samples taken yesterday from a suspected coronavirus victim. The samples were despatched to KEMRI laboratories in Nairobi for tests.

She said a second case reported in Khwisero was being handled in line with World Health Organization (WHO) recommended protocols.

The County Government had procured protective gear to be used by isolation facilities and hospital workers as well as those directly involved in emergency response operations such as the Red Cross, County enforcement and National security agents.

“We look forward to receiving more gear from the national government,” she said, adding that Disease Surveillance Teams have been trained and stationed at sub county and ward levels to monitor the situation and take appropriate preventive and mitigation interventions.
Madam Rachel also informed the team that USAID had been approached for support in provision of required materials and logistics.

The County Commissioner called for team work between the two levels of government to keep all residents and visitors safe.
“Let’s all utilize the network of Chiefs, Assistant Chiefs and village elders to monitor possible gaps in prevention of the deadly viral attack,” she said.

The CECM for Finance and Planning, Mr. Geoffrey Omulayi assured the team that necessary budgetary provisions would be made to ensure that all health and security workers on COVID-19 assignment get necessary facilitation.

On her part, the County Secretary, madam Jacinta Aluoch Odhiambo commended the team for their active participation and pertinent insights into management of coronavirus threat.

“We need to put together a comprehensive county emergency response strategy and plans to ensure that our people are sensitized and safe,” she said.

She added that a COVID-19 Command Centre for coordination of the multi-agency operations and communication updates will be set up at the County headquarters.

Also present were deputy county commissioner, Mr. Ogolla, Chief Officers: Brenda Makokha, Lawrence Omuhaka and Dr. Phitalis Masakhwe, County Police Commander, Mr. Muli Kakamega OCPD, Mr. Kabena, Youth Advisor, Mr. Mophat Mandela, Head of Enforcement, Mr. Baraza, among other senior county and National government officials.