The Kenya Revenue Authority is the latest agency to face the effects of Covid-19. Some of its staff tested positive for the deadly virus.
Over the last two weeks, some of the KRA staff working in Mombasa port have been in quarantine. They came into contact with a foreigner who later on tested positive for Coronavirus.
KRA has put 10 of its staff in quarantine after they came into contact with a team of Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) that tested positive for Covid-19.
Last week, Salim Rashid, the acting manager of KPA, confirmed that two more KPA staff tested positive for the virus. For this reason, he sent 16 of his team to quarantine at Bandari Academy.
The Kenya Ports Authority has scaled down its operations because of the increase in the number of infected staff.
KPA staffer Ursula Bumula succumbed to coronavirus last week. Since then, the agency sent several people on mandatory quarantine. They also asked hundreds of others to self-isolate.
The coronavirus pandemic threatens to significantly slow down essential activities at the Mombasa port. Most people in quarantine and self-isolation handle transshipments, berth records, export documentation and reconciliation departments.
Ideally, KRA staff and KPA staff work hand in hand in crucial departments. The level of exposure is very high. For this reason, KRA staff also end up getting infected.
At the customs department, KRA has asked its staffers not to receive any paper documents from third parties.
Kevin Safari, the KRA customs commissioner, has asked KRA staff to take Covid-19 seriously and take all the necessary precautions.
“Ask importers, customs agents and transporters to scan and email all their correspondence. Do not invite or allow anyone into your workspace, including fellow staff,” Mr Safari directed. “Wear gloves, and face masks while on duty and if they are not available, buy them using office imprest.”
KRA has provided its staff with protective equipment.