Nyanza based Agrochemical and Food Company Ltd which was earlier closed by Nema over pollution has been reopened
to flood the Kenyan market with hand sanitizers in the wake of coronavirus tensions in the country.
During a press conference on Wednesday, February 18, 2020, Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe, announced that the government has already infused a system in the Kenya Medical Research Institute (KEMRI) to work with Muhoroni based factory to produce ethanol (which is the main constituent of hand sanitizers) in plenty.
The announcement comes after supermarkets and pharmacies across the country reported shortages after Kenyans scrambled to buy the hand sanitizers in plenty shortly after the first case of coronavirus was confirmed.
The scarcity of the commodity in Kenyan supermarkets and pharmacies has seen some retailers and business hike the prices even after the government warned against it.
“We are going to increase the supply of hand sanitizers in the market to the extent that this business of overpricing will not be viable after a while,” said Mutahi.
Supermarkets was recently on the spot after it emerged that the retailer hiked the price of hand sanitizers on Sunday following a growing demand in the country.
This prompted the Competition Authority of Kenya (CAK) to force the retailer to reimburse customers who had bought the item at exaggerated prices.
In a statement issued on Monday, the CAK of Kenya said it had established that the price of Tropical brand hand sanitizers, which retails at 800 shillings, was increased to amounts as high as 1000 shillings in the supermarket.
Spotcheck by Kisasa News team revealed that most Suprmarket outlets had run out of alcoholic wet wipes after panic-striken Kenyans cleared sanitizers on supermarkets shelves after first case of coronavirus
Hand sanitizer is a liquid generally used to decrease infectious agents on the hands. Formulations of the alcohol-based type are preferable to hand washing with soap and water in most situations in the healthcare setting. It is generally more effective at killing microorganisms and better tolerated than soap and water.
The two petitioners, Mr Patrick Odundo aND Maxwell Otieno had filed a suit before Environment and Lands Court Judge Anthony Ombwayo seeking a mandatory order of injunction to permanently stop Agro Chemicals from any further refuse disposal into the river and or Muhoroni Township pending hearing and determination of the case.
The petitioners claimed farming, fishing, livestock keeping and other related economic activities that depend on the have been disrupted.
Confirming the new development, Kisumu County Governor Prof Anyang Nyong’o thanked the State department of Environment and NEMA for restoring back Agro-Chemical.