The federal government of Somalia has asked its citizens living in Kenya and willing to be evacuated at own cost to file their contact details as soon as possible.
Officials at the Somali Embassy in Nairobi issued a notice asking anyone ready to buy a ticket out of Kenya to send their information via an online platform to be helped out of the country.
The flight booking will be ongoing until on 17th May 2020, according to the embassy.
One of the conditions issued said only Somali citizens will be evacuated as long as they can pay their own ticket. Those citizens will have to prove they are free from the novel coronavirus disease (Covid-19), which means they will have to be certified by the Kenyan authorities before they are flown back to the country.
The decision to evacuate citizens comes amid increasing public pressure both at home and among the diaspora community for the government to rescue those stranded in the wake of the novel coronavirus pandemic.
Meanwhile, Somalia has seen a spike in the covid-19 cases despite the country facing heavy flooding and a threat of desert locust infestation and the World Health Organization said it has intensified response efforts for contact tracing in Somalia by deploying some 4,000 community healthcare workers across the country.
The UN health agency has also warned that if the virus transmission is not slowed down rapidly, the patient surge and increasing demand for health care may overwhelm the country’s fragile health system.
The Horn of Africa nation has instituted measures to contain the possible spread of COVID19 including closing schools, banning large gatherings and suspending international and domestic passenger flights.