The decisions below have been made with careful consideration in order to reduce the risk of transmission for the Jamat, and should not cause alarm for the Jamat. We humbly request for your support and understanding in this regard.
- Bait-ul Ilm and STEP classes, and ECD classes will be discontinued at this time. We will inform the Jamat of any changes.
- Jamati social programs: we will continue to inform the Jamat on any changes through various channels.
The video above provides responses to Frequently Asked Questions about COVID-19 and was recorded by medical professionals at the Aga Khan University Hospital, Nairobi.
We continue to urge any Jamati members who may have travelled outside the country and are returning, to seek urgent medical advice, if they are experiencing the following:
1. A fever of more than 38 degrees Celsius
2. Cold or Cough
3. Shortness of breath
Effective 22nd March 2020, ALL passengers (Kenyan citizens, residents and foreigners) arriving at points of entry will undergo mandatory quarantine at a Government-designated facility, at their own expense. Please do make sure you adhere to these Government directives.
In order to protect yourself please do the following:
1. Wash hands frequently and thoroughly with soap and water, for at least 20 seconds. Lather your hands, including the backs, between your fingers, and under your nails and scrub for at least 20 seconds. Then rinse.
2. Use hand sanitizer to clean your hands when water is not available.
3. When coughing or sneezing, cover your mouth and nose with a flexed elbow or a tissue.
4. Avoid touching your face.
5. Avoid contact with people who are coughing and sneezing.
1. If you have flu-like symptoms, please take the opportunity to rest and self-isolate to protect yourself and others.
2. Avoid public gatherings.
3. Do not go to work or school
4. Seek medical advice by calling the hotline numbers indicated below.
In countries at the epicenter of the Coronavirus, medical professionals have clearly stated that the lack of self-isolation earlier on possibly led to the rapid spread of the Coronavirus. Self-isolation means cutting yourself off from the public or larger crowds. You need to stay at home, not go to work, school or other public places, and avoid public transport or taxis.
If you are living with others, this means that you need to also isolate yourself from them, especially if they are more vulnerable or at higher risk of infection. If you are self-isolating:
1. Stay in a separate room, and where possible ensure that you have access to your own washroom.
2. Where sharing a washroom, use the washroom after all others, and do not share toiletries.
3. Avoid sharing household items, including utensils, towels and bedding. Wash these items thoroughly after use.
4. Ensure the surfaces in the household such as tables, doorknobs, phones and other electronics, and any other surfaces that come into contact more often, should be thoroughly cleaned or disinfected.
5. Ask for help if you need groceries, other shopping or medication. Ask your friends, family, or delivery company to leave supplies at the door where possible. Limit contact as much as you can.
6. Do not have any visitors over.
7. Wear a face mask if you must be around other people.
The following also help you fight infections:
1. A healthy diet with plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables, and less fat.
2. Enough rest.
3. Drinking lots of fluids, especially water.
4. Regular exercise.
The Aga Khan University Hospital Nairobi has set up a 24/7 hotline number manned by medical professionals and providing credible information about the virus. In case you have any questions or concerns, you can reach the hotline on +254 (0)709 931 700. This hotline is also accessible to anyone outside of Nairobi who may be seeking information. For up to date information, subscribe to the Aga Khan University Hospital Nairobi website on www.aku.edu/akuhn
Aga Khan Hospital Mombasa: +254 415 051824 or + 254 (0) 791 182 945
Aga Khan Hospital Kisumu on +254 (0) 722 203 622 or +254 (0) 733 637 566
Ministry of Health
Ministry of Health emergency hotlines: + 254 (0) 729 471 414, +254 (0)732 353 535 or 719
Jamati members should consider the risks of international travel, given the spread of the virus and the difficulty of predicting which travel destinations may put people at risk. Those age 65 and over and those with chronic health conditions should be particularly careful about travel due to their higher risk. We strongly encourage the following:
- You are at much greater risk if travelling to international conferences or large gatherings in enclosed spaces.
- Check entry requirements for the countries you are visiting before you travel. Many countries have implemented restricted entry regulations.
- Make sure you have checked with your employer before travelling. Many companies have implemented travel restrictions on employees in order to protect staff and workplaces.
- Consider whether, if you get sick, you can afford staying in a hotel abroad longer than planned, or, if you get stuck in quarantine while abroad, you have sufficient sick leave and can be away for longer than anticipated, if required
- If travelling, consider purchasing adequate travel insurance that will cover you for a pandemic, or for any cancellation that will need to be made.
- If you have travelled and returned to Kenya, you should self-monitor for symptoms for at least 14 days after your return, during your self-quarantine. If symptoms do appear, contact the hotline numbers above.
All international passenger flights arriving in Kenya are suspended effective midnight on Wednesday, 25th March 2020. The only exception to this are cargo flights whose crew must observe strict guidelines. Effective immediately, ALL passengers (Kenyan citizens, residents and foreigners) arriving at points of entry will undergo mandatory quarantine at a Government-designated facility, at their own expense. Countries wishing to evacuate their nationals must make their arrangements to do so within this period. Kenyans who are in foreign countries currently and will not have come back within the said period are advised to observe the guidelines issued in the respective countries wherever they are.
It has been observed that there are those who are not observing self-quarantine protocol. Consequently, it has been decided by the Government that all persons who violate the self-quarantine requirement will be forcefully quarantined for a full 14 days at their cost, and thereafter arrested and charged in accordance with the Public Health Act.
Sharing false information can cause much harm to the Jamat and the wider public. We are aware that there are many unverified messages shared and forwarded primarily on Whatsapp within Kenya. We are also aware that there have been some unverified messages shared amongst Jamat globally through email and Whatsapp with false information about the COVID-19. Please DO NOT share or forward messages that are not verified by medical personnel or the appropriate authorities. These messages provide misinformation and can lead to Jamat and the wider Kenyan public taking actions that are not medically sound, and that can cause serious harm.
It is important to be prepared for all possible scenarios. We want to ensure that all Jamati members are prepared to try as much as possible to reduce the chances of infection.
We recommend the following:
- Do your shopping at off-peak hours.
- If commuting using public transport, try commuting outside of rush hour.
- If you are uncomfortable going to your regular gym, opt to continue your fitness regime at home or outdoors.
- If you do become sick at home and are a caregiver for children or the elderly, ensure you have other caregivers to help and take over duties so that you can rest.
- If a family member becomes ill, speak to your employer about options for working at home. If you, yourself become ill, stay home and rest until you recuperate.
Read the latest EPB updates on the impact of COVID-19 on the economy:
1. EPB FAQs on the Impact of COVID-19 on the Kenyan economy - 19th March 2020
Businesses should consider the following:
- Reduce reliance on a single market or channel for sourcing products and seek alternate supply solutions;
- Review expectations of revenue generation for 2020, especially on the key lines of business impacted;
- Ensure availability and access to capital to withstand shocks and meet financial obligations. Many countries around the world have seen a total shutdown of their economic activity for an indefinite period and we need to be prepared for such an eventuality;
- Maintain a savings cushion that is readily available if required. Liquidity in the financial system can become sparse in times of stress; savings should only be deposited with sound financial institutions that benefit from a strong credit rating and a low cost of funding;
- Avoid excessive leverage and minimize currency mismatch (for instance borrowing in US Dollars when revenues are in Kenya Shillings);
- Scale back or defer aggressive expansions plans or speculative ventures;
- Minimize unnecessary expenses and maintain low overheads;
- In line with the Government Directive and when possible encourage remote working for non-essential staff and provide working conditions that minimise transmission risk;
Jamati members should also minimise unnecessary spending and continue to be prudent with personal finances. Also in line with the Government Directive to reduce the risk of transmission, we highly encourage Jamati members to conduct cashless transactions using mobile money and debit or credit cards.
The Jamat is encouraged to contact the Economic Planning Board on phone at +254 (0) 735 681 105 and on email at [email protected] for any further queries or confidential advice on the above.
Unscrupulous individuals may use the Coronavirus and names of Government organizations to enable crime. The National Safety & Security Committee advises the Jamat to take precaution and not release any information nor allow unknown persons into your premises without proper verification including ID checks. In the event suspicious characters claiming to be from the Government or Ministry of Health approach your residence and refer to COVID-19 do not allow them entry without proper verification.
Please refrain from purchasing any purported COVID-19 self-test kits. The World Health Organization has confirmed that currently, testing can only happen in designated testing facilities.
If in doubt on these or any other safety and security matters, contact any of these Safety and Security hotlines: +254 (0)711778899 or +254 (0)719778899
In line with the ethics and values of our faith, let us all strive to be as supportive to each other as possible. If you have elderly members in your family or in the Jamat, or members who have chronic illnesses or lower immunity, talk to them and help them understand the steps they should take in order to keep healthy, including the recommendations outlined above.
Be careful not to make inappropriate judgements or stereotype specific individuals based on their race, nationality or physical appearance. Incidences have been reported in Kenya of discrimination and harassment of individuals based on perceptions of their nationality or ethnicity following the COVID-19 outbreak globally. Respond respectfully and kindly, but firmly, to inappropriate comments or behavior, especially in Jamatkhana spaces or community social events. Consider the impact of your behavior on other people.
While it’s always good to be prepared, don’t panic shop or hoard at shops or supermarkets – this perpetuates panic and creates a shortage of supplies for others who are also trying to keep their homes, families and workplaces safe.
We thank the Jamat for all the support and understanding that you have given us during this time. We would like to also thank the numerous volunteers who are working hard behind the scenes to ensure the wellbeing and safety of all Jamati members. Together, as ONE JAMAT, we will overcome this.