The Senate Ad Hoc Committee on Covid-19 has called for the evacuation of Kenyans in the diaspora who desperately want to return home amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The Nairobi Senator Johnson Sakaja-led committee wants these Kenyans airlifted to the country for free with priority given to students.
On Thursday, May 21st, the team asked Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary Raychelle Omamo to table a report detailing the criteria to be used to identify Kenyans abroad who require support to get back home.
Further to this, the Ministry is also required to indicate how it will mobilize resources to facilitate their repatriation.
“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs should set a criterion on the eligibility of Kenyans in the diaspora who are in dire need of coming back home but cannot afford air-tickets, giving priority to students,” the committee recommended.
Foreign Affairs Principal Secretary Amb. Macharia Kamau previously stated the government cannot afford to evacuate all Kenyans stranded abroad.
Kenyans evacuated from various foreign countries including the UK, India, and China on chartered flights organized by the government purchased air tickets from their own pockets.
Senator Sakaja said Kenyans stranded overseas can be brought back for free if the Foreign Affairs Ministry seeks support from the various emergency funds set up to mitigate the effects of Covid-19.
Nearly 1,000 Kenyans who afforded to pay for their travel costs have so far been flown back to the country on Kenya Airways chartered planes.