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Yes, Kenya’s president confirmed two new coronavirus cases on 15 March 

A Facebook post published on 15 March 2020 and flagged as potentially false by Facebook’s fact-checking system claims “Kenya confirms two more coronavirus cases”. 

It shows a screengrab from a Citizen TV-broadcast, of president Uhuru Kenyatta speaking into two microphones, behind a podium. It also links to an article on the Citizen Digital website, with the same headline. 

Covid-19 and Kenya

Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that cause illnesses ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases. An outbreak of a new strain, given the name 2019-nCoV and known as novel coronavirus, was identified in China in late December 2019. The virus causes the disease Covid-19.

As of 24 March 2020, there were more than 380,000 confirmed cases of Covid-19 worldwide, and close on 17,000 people had died from the disease.

Kenya’s health cabinet secretary, Mutahi Kagwe, announced the first confirmed case of the new coronavirus in the country on 13 March. Kagwe said that the patient was a 27-year-old woman who had returned to Kenya from the US a week before testing positive.

According to Kagwe, all the people she had come into close contact with since she arrived in the country had been traced.

The president’s briefing

On 15 March, Kenyatta addressed the country. This footage was aired by multiple mainstream TV stations. The Citizen TV Facebook post and article are accurate.

Kenyatta said: “Today, we have received confirmation of two more cases of the coronavirus. The two have tested positive as a result of coming into contact with the first patient.” 

The president added that the two were in “stable condition and responding well to treatment”. 

As of 23 March, the health ministry confirmed there were 16 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in Kenya. – Grace Gichuhi


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