17 August 2017

Kenya: City Hall Seeks Orders to Close Panari Hotel Over Cholera Cases

The Nairobi City County Public Health department has moved to court seeking orders of close Panari Hotel along Mombasa Road following a cholera outbreak at the establishment.

A petition filed at the City Hall courts wants the hotel's management compelled to close it down after 22 people were admitted to hospital with cholera symptoms on July 20, 2017.

After investigations, the Ministry of Health found that one case was confirmed after a worker at the hotel tested positive for cholera.

Those affected by the infection were 20 NIC Bank staff who had a workshop at the hotel on the said date when they were rushed to various hospitals in the city for treatment.

DECLINES TO CLOSE

The hotel has received closure notice from both the national government and City Hall but has declined to close it until comprehensive inspection is done.

In a letter to the former Governor Evans Kidero dated July 22, 2017 the Ministry of Health stated that two people who had been admitted to Mater Hospital claimed to have eaten fish and salad from the Panari Hotel.

"There were approximately 20 people who attended a one-day workshop on July 20, 2017 which was supported by NIC bank and Chloride Exide. An investigation team comprising of officers from the Ministry of Health and Nairobi County confirmed that the workshop took place. It was further observed that some key health elements were not put in place,'" read the letter signed by Principal Secretary Julius Korir.

Mr Korir said that the hotel's management failed to produce the list of names and contacts of the participants who were suspected to have been served with the food suspected to have been contaminated.

CERTIFICATES

The hotel also refused to hand over the food handlers' certificates to the investigating team, mainly those dealing with products and catering services.

Mr Korir added that they also failed to produce a food hygiene license that allows the establishment to operate as a hotel outlet.

The hotel management further failed to sign an acknowledgement notice issued by the authorities for its closure.

"The purpose of this letter is therefore to advise your office to close the hotel as we await the outcome of the cholera culture test, food and water samples results that are to be out, as well as to have the hotel meet the above five stipulated health requirement," said Mr Korir.

CLOSURE NOTICE

On the July 28, 2017, City Hall sent a closure notice to the hotel demanding the management to present its workers re-examination and valid medical certificates.

City Public Health Officer Jarus Musumba stated in the notice that the hotel should also provide a food hygiene licences for 2017.

"Until the results of the food samples collected for bacteriological analysis are out from the national public health laboratories, disinfect all your food preparations and food serving bays and obtain a disinfection certificate," said Mr Musumba.

Chief magistrate Roselyn Oganyo adjourned the case to August 28, 2017.

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