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Sarah Serem: Africans sleeping on the streets in China are not Kenyans

Kenya’s ambassador to China, Sarah Serem, says that no Kenyan has been left on the streets in China and the pictures and videos circulating online might be of Africans from other countries.

Speaking to NTV on Friday night, the ambassador said that some of the pictures making rounds on social media are old, and although some maybe current cases they were not Kenyans.

“I want to tell you I have also been seeing the same on social media and I am more concerned with my Kenyans so, I checked to see if any of my Kenyans are the ones appearing on social media and on the scripts we have seen going round,” Ambassador Serem said.

She added: “But we haven’t received one single case of Kenyan that have been in the streets, apparently some of those doing the rounds, some are old cases others may be fresh cases yes, but absolutely not the Kenyans.”

On the matter of the government evacuating Kenyans from China, she said that the matter was still under discussion and are yet to confirm on a date on which it would happen.

The delay is due to the fact that some Kenyans do not have travel papers and therefore preparations have to be done first.

However, Kenyans will still have to pay for the flight tickets.

“Majority of our diasporas are students, and these are students who are ongoing with classes. And so the majority of those who are legally here have absolutely no reason to go back home,” explained ambassador Serem.

She added: “There is a suggested date, but the fact of the matter is these are people who require a lot of preparations before they depart. We have communicated that information to Kenyans that are interested in going and we have been in touch with them since the issue of the virus came in. On when they will be able to come back depends on when everyone would have been able to get the necessary papers.”

Already the embassy has registered 171 Kenyans who are interested in returning home, out of which 112 have invalid papers.