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UN to airlift the 53-year-old coronavirus patient to Nairobi

Author: Ayuen Panchol | Published: Friday, April 10, 2020

A UN plane | File photo

The second person to test coronavirus positive in South Sudan will be flown to Nairobi, Kenya, for specialized medical attention.

The High-Level Taskforce on COVID-19 confirmed the case of the 53-year-old woman on 7 April 2020.

The unnamed UN staff traveled to Juba from Nairobi on 23 March 2020.

Kenya, which has banned all international flights, confirmed it had sanctioned the evacuation of the UN staff, but denied reports that other South Sudan patients were to be airlifted to Kenya, reports The Standard.

“This is a different case. This patient has sought to be brought back and Foreign Affairs has to liaise with the Director-General, Kenya Civil Aviation Authority, for landing rights,” said James Macharia, Transport Cabinet Secretary.

Recently, the task force, which is headed up by President Salva Kiir, requested the Kenyan government to allow a sick South Sudanese national special entry to Nairobi for treatment.

This angered some South Sudanese and Kenyan citizens, saying coronavirus pandemic is a threat to every nation and leaders should tackle it in their respective countries.

Some went on to challenge South Sudan leaders to shoot down the coronavirus since they neglected the health sector and “invested” millions of dollars in firearms.

South Sudan has crippled health infrastructures, nearly collapsed public health systems, and inadequately qualified health professionals, according to UN reports.

So far, there are three confirmed cases of the pandemic, all of whom are UN staff.

Observers doubt South Sudan has the capacity to handle the virus, especially when it spreads further.

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