Kenyan tests that President Uhuru Kenyatta and his team had prepared ahead of entering London today were declined.
Business Daily reports that Britain has demanded a top mark Covid-19 test from President Uhuru and his team after being exempted from the ban on Kenyan travellers.
The Kenyan delegation will be required to take the PCR [Polymerase chain reaction] test — the most advanced of the three main Covid-19 tests which reveals whether someone has the virus very early on in their illness.
“Whole delegation will undergo a PCR test. They are exempt from quarantine as with the G7 earlier this year, and other major diplomatic events and summits you’ve seen in other parts of Europe too,” a top UK official who requested anonymity told the Business Daily.
The UK is keen to guard the safety of its Prime Minister Boris Johnson and the royal family who will interact with Kenya’s officials during the three-day trip.
The trip is the first President Uhuru is making in UK in 18 months, comes days after London retained Kenya on England’s “Red List” amid concerns about the spread of new Covid-19 variants.
Travellers arriving in the UK from countries on the Red List are denied entry, while returning Britons must submit to 10 days of mandatory quarantine in hotels.
Mr Kenyatta is expected to ink several economic and security deals on the back of the trade agreement Kenya signed in December with Britain to ensure an uninterrupted flow of goods between the two nations upon the UK’s exit from European Union trading arrangements.
The December deal granted Kenyan goods duty-free and quota-free access to Britain.
“Alongside meeting Prime Minister Johnson for talks at his residency, President Kenyatta will jointly announce major investments into the Big Four projects on affordable housing, manufacturing and health partnerships,” said a joint press release that announced the UK visit.
In May this year, Kenya lifted the ban on flights between Nairobi and London and eased restrictions imposed in retaliation to its inclusion in the Red List.
Besides the UK, Australia, Argentina, Belgium, Cambodia, Canada, Portugal, Denmark, Bulgaria and Singapore top the list of countries that have banned or placed restrictions on holders of Kenyan passports.
Others are Hong Kong, Bangladesh, Chile, Czech Republic, Cyprus and Cameroon, which Henley & Partners lists as the only African country to place restrictions on Kenya.