When Catholic priest Father Richard Oduor decided to preside over a burial ceremony on March 14 2020 in Ugunja subcounty, Siaya county little did he know the national heat it was bound to generate.
For now, mourners numbering to 148 have been tracked and placed under isolation.
The priest attended a relative’s funeral in Ambira area and served the Holy Communion to mourners and held talks with a priest friend in Sega.
Fathers Bosco Kamau and Anthony-Mario Egbunonu from the Utawala Parish interacted with him.
A press statement by Nairobi Utawala parish reads in part, “We allowed him back on condition he would self-quarantine for 14 days. On his arrival on Monday, March 16, we immediately took him to a room at the back of the parish compound, formerly a store, and isolated him there. We never allowed him to say any mass in the Holy Family parish or the Outstation of St Patrick’s a Mavoko,” the parish said in a statement..
“On Saturday, March 21, after fever and vomiting, Fr Richard was taken to Mbagathi Hospital where yesterday we were informed that he tested positive for Covid-19,” the statement said.
Father Oduor has taken responsibility for his actions and is informing the authorities of all the people he met, the parish said.
A multi-agency team, comprising health workers, and national government administrative officers have since been dispatched to track the contacts of a Catholic priest.
At the same time, three people have been put on forced quarantine at Jaramogi Oginga Odinga Teaching and Referral Hospital in Kisumu after they failed to observe self-quarantine regulations for Kenyans jetting back into the country.
The three who jetted into the country from Dubai on March 16, 17 and 20 respectively travelled by public means from Nairobi to Migori and Kisii respectively to renew their passports. The burial has left many residents in counties of Siaya, Kisumu, Homa Bay, Busia, Vihiga, Kakamega and Nairobi worried. In Kisumu, the priest spends several hours at Kisumu hotel. Already, many of the staff at Kisumu hotel are living in fear after four other colleagues that closely interacted with Father Oduor were placed under mandatory self-quarantine.
Fr Oduor according to his passport travelled from Rome-Italy entering Kenya via Jomo Kenyatta International Airport on March 12 2020.
At JKIA, his temperature after test was found to be normal. A source close to Fr Oduor revealed to your favourite Weekly Citizen, the result made him sigh with relief as he was worried after having been in coronavirus hotbed Italy.
The results were a blessing to Oduor who immediately decided to embark on his mission in the country. What he failed to understand was the fact that despite his temperature results at JKIA showing normality, he was required to undergo a 14-days mandatory self quarantine.
Weekly Citizen has information, the state’s main concern has been, once one arrives in the country and is tested normal temperature at any entry point; they tend to forego the 14 days self-quarantine mandatory.
The cases have been profiled across the country. Apart from Fr Oduor, a nun in Makueni who travelled from Spain was forcibly isolated after she failed to self-quarantine herself.
She arrived on March 18 at JKIA and was received by her father, mother and two sisters. With her also was a Machakos nurse.
After a tipoff by members of public, the state administrators forced her into self-quarantine. Due to her interaction, 37 people have been placed under forced quarantine in Makueni.
Another case is that of Samson Rutto, a Kenyan athlete. He was forced out of a public service vehicle at Mau Summit, Nakuru county. Crime, he had landed at JKIA on March 22, screened and decided to travel to Eldoret, Uasin Gishu.
Passengers’ concern was that, Rutto was boasting of his trip to India and back with someone on mobile phone. He was arrested and quarantined at Nakuru Institute.
Then we have Kilifi deputy governor saga. The office of Kilifi deputy is a cursed one so they say. In December 2018, former deputy governor Kennety Kombo was shot dead by gunmen at his Nyali residence in Mombasa.
This time round, the current deputy is in the news. Gideon Saburi was forced to undergo quarantine after testing positive for the Covid-19 virus.
After his return from Germany, Saburi decided to endanger other people’s lives. He engaged his boss governor Amason Kingi and conducted official county duties.
With the disease, Saburi visited Cafesserie joint, located at City Mall, Mombasa and was with county officials at Rabai, Kilifi and attended funeral at Dandora in Kamba-Ribe ward.
Then we have the case of 19- year-old student who flew from Switzerland landing at JKIA.
Using Fly540 he laned at Kisumu International Airport and then decided to use a PSV to Mumias.
Feeling sick, he checked into St Mary’s Hospital Mumias and then to Bungoma Life-Care Hospital.
He was at Bungoma Hospital with relatives. He was transferred to Mbagathi Hospital and tested positive.