A few facts about Ebola & Travel to Kenya by: Jake Grieves Cook & Mohammed Hersi

Following extensive news coverage in the international media about the outbreak of Ebola in West Africa, I would like to share a few facts with you so that you are well informed on this weighty matter. The situation is as follows:

1. The current outbreak of Ebola in West Africa was first reported in March 2014, and involves Guinea, Liberia, Nigeria and Sierra Leone.

2. Kenya is not affected by the outbreak of Ebola as there has not been any recorded case of Ebola in this country.

3. The affected countries are on the extreme West of the African Continent, thousands of kilometers from Kenya and indeed Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea are closer to Madrid, Paris and London than they are to Kenya in East Africa.

4. It is considered very unlikely that travellers from the affected countries would come to Kenya overland by road as it could entail a journey of more than 2 weeks and would require driving through places like the Central African Republic, DRC or Southern Sudan where there are serious security issues and disruptions to road travel. Any infected person setting off from West Africa to undertake such a journey by road to Kenya would be very likely to have developed obvious symptoms before arriving at the Kenya border post where screening is now in place to identify and isolate anyone considered to be at risk of carrying the disease. So the possibility of Ebola spreading overland from West Africa to Kenya is considered extremely unlikely.

5. Travellers from West Africa normally come to Kenya by air just as they can travel at present on flights from West Africa to Europe, America, theMiddle East, Asia and Australia. The international airlines have implemented screening for passengers boarding flights in West Africa and the Kenyan Government and Ministry of Health, working in close co-operation with the Kenya Airports Authority, have now set up arrangements at the international airport in Nairobi to screen all passengers arriving on flights from West Africa to prevent any infected person from entering the country.

6. According to the medical authorities, the overall risk of a traveller contracting Ebola is very low as it requires direct contact with the bodily fluids or secretions (e.g. blood, saliva, urine, etc) of an infected person or dead body. Ebola is not an airborne virus like influenza or tuberculosis, it is not spread by coughing or sneezing and is not in water or food. Simply washing hands with soap and water can destroy the virus. Infected persons become contagious only after the onset of symptoms. As symptoms worsen, the ability to transmit the virus increases. As a result, patients are usually most likely to infect others at a severe stage of the disease, when they are visibly, and physically, too ill to travel and at that stage they will probably not be physically able to board an aircraft. WHO is therefore advising against imposing travel bans to and from affected countries.The Director of WHO Global Capacity Alert and Response has stated that because the risk of Ebola transmission on aircraft is so low, WHO does not consider air transport hubs at high risk for further spread of Ebola. The highest Ebola virus level is found in a dead body, according to WHO, so the highest risk of Ebola transmission is in preparing a body for burial. The persons most at risk are those in very close direct contact with infected patients or corpses such as doctors, nurses or mortuary attendants.

7. The World Health Organisation (WHO), has clarified that Kenya’s Ebola risk profile has not changed, as reported by the media. In a statement, the WHO has commended Kenya for its efforts in putting in place measures to prevent possible importation and to implement early detection and containment if a case is detected in an arriving traveller.

8. Staying in international hotels in Nairobi and at the coastal beach resorts or going on safari to the wildlife parks in Kenya at the present time is considered to entail no risk of contracting Ebola. We will continue to monitor the news bulletins and daily updates from The World Health Organisation to ensure that we are kept informed and can act in the interests of our customers’ safety, which is always our highest priority.

The Non But Essential travel advisory is hurting Mombasa more than Tui Thomson exit…

It is now official that Thompson Airline the only charter flight from the UK into Mombasa will only come back in winter 2015. Allow me to state a few things. I appreciate the fact that Thomson was flying to Mombasa and they opted to leave and in addition they made dramatic move to evacuate all the tourists they had brought to Mombasa. Allow me to lay down a few facts so that we do not  get misinformed. Fact No1: Thompson flight was 1 flight a week bringing on average 270 passengers to Mombasa for a 7 or 14 days holiday.  Fact No2;  Thompson was using a few select resorts at the Kenya coast and many of the resorts were not even getting their guests . I can speak for both Sarova Whitesands during my tenure they left due to rates issues and they also stopped using Voyager Beach Resort due to rates issues. Fact No3: If suppose Thomson flight was fully booked all year round and I will even allow them full flight in the low season it means they will have brought 14,040 passengers including many who buy ticket only and end up in private residence and Mtwapa. Now the numbers of British tourists in 2013 was 180,000 + which means Thompson figure is hardly 6.5%.  The lack of Thompson flight is not what is hurting us. What is hurting us MOST is the Non but essential travel advisory making Mombasa and good part of Kenya coast a no go zone area for the British tourists. Once that is lifted then KQ, BA, into Nbi and ET will bring us load of English tourists into Mombasa some via Nbi or Addis . Tourists on scheduled flights are normally better  yield clientele. Therefore it is misleading and totally wrong to keep piling our misery on the exit of Thompson flight. What we need once security is sorted out which I believe we have now done so is to lobby the UK government  to lift the Non but essential travel so that a would be British traveller can happily and freely choose to travel to  Mombasa and Kenya coast.

The German Football team were crowned Kings, Lessons?

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We can learn alot from sports when it comes to Management . These basic stats from World cup 2014 says it all. The team with the most passes lifted the trophy. Germany had 4157 passes against a tournaments average of 1583. When Brazil faced Germany , Brazil had 18 shots Germany had 14 , Ball possession Brazil had 51% Germany had 49% , Corners Brazil had 7 Germany had 5 , Shots on goal Brazil had 13 Germany had 12 but in the long run Brazil were drenched 7 -1. It means while Brazil & other teams players chose to hold on to the ball the Germans were busy passing the ball looking for a path to score. While Brazil were busy with efforts , Germans were more focused on results. At work you could be a busy body coupled with drama but Nil at being effective . It is also clear that the team with the best attack was Brazil which also soaked the most goals in the tournament. As they busy played individual runs and shooting in a wild manner off target they were also exposing themselves then its no wonder the team with most passes hit them 7 -1 . Germans played with passion, full commitment, they were brave, recall Veteran workhorse Mario Schweinsteiger getting stiches as we watched and he came back to play on, Now that is full commitment. There is an old proverb , “If you want to walk fast then walk alone if you want to walk far walk together” . Germany chose to walk as a team, they walked the furthest and were deservedly crowned champions. As a company or a business you have a choice to be a Brazil or Germany. Good luck.