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We did not steal your 6 million coronavirus masks, Kenya tells Germany


The Kenyan government has dismissed reports claiming that a shipment of six million coronavirus prevention masks destined for Germany disappeared at a Kenyan airport last week.

Kenya Airports Authority (KAA) says it conducted an investigation immediately the issue was raised.

It, however, found out that no such cargo had been transported through JKIA for the last two weeks and no reports of missing cargo had been made to the authorities.

“Following media reports that a German army shipment of 6 million masks meant for protection against COVID-19 virus vanished at JKIA last week, KAA has conducted an investigation into the matter. Our investigation has concluded that there was no cargo of this nature that has passed through JKIA for the last two weeks and no missing cargo has been reported to the authorities,” KAA said in a statement on Tuesday.

The report was first published by German media outlet Der Spiegel and picked up by local media houses through wire service AFP.

“We, therefore, wish to inform the public that we are treating this report of alleged disappearance of six million type FFP2 protective masks as fake news & that our cargo section continues with normal operations,” concluded KAA.

The report in Der Spiegel said: “Insiders, therefore, suspect that after the deal with the German procurement office, the manufacturer might get a better price for its goods and sell the masks there (in Kenya). But it is also possible that criminals stole the delivery at the airport and now sold it profitably in Kenya.”

Due to arrive in the country on March 20, the missing mask shipment was one of the first major deliveries needed to gird Germany’s health system, Spiegel reported.

Germany is the third-worst-affected country by the coronavirus pandemic in Europe, after Italy and Spain.