British Airways has increased its flights from Nairobi to London as part of efforts to evacuate British nationals looking to return home amid the Coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis, on online report said.
The move comes ahead of the ban on international flights that comes into effect on Wednesday midnight as a measure to contain the spread of Coronavirus.
The United Kingdom Embassy in Kenya has, in a tweet, urged individuals to reserve their flight as early as possible. ‘British Airways have opened up a small number of additional flights from Nairobi to London, for those wishing to return to the UK. We recommend you book on as early a flight as possible. Please visit http://ba.com to book,’ it said.
The British High Commissioner to Kenya Jane Marriott highlighted that the flights were only outbound. ‘I should stress that these are outbound (Nairobi to London) only. No one will be allowed to enter Kenya, so the London-Nairobi leg will be empty. What I now know is called a ‘ghost flight’,’ she said.
On Sunday Kenya Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe said that only cargo planes will be allowed to enter the country with the crew required to observe strict safety guidelines. The government further directed that individuals entering the country before the suspension takes effect will undergo mandatory quarantine at a government-designated facility at their own expense.
The Cabinet Secretary added that countries wishing to evacuate their nationals must make arrangements to do so before Wednesday, March 25, midnight.
The government issued the directive after Kenya reported increasing number of imported COVID-19 cases. The Kenyan government confirmed nine new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, March 24, bringing the total number of infections in the country to 25.