Kenyans in China have been served with an ultimatum to book a flight back home after the government arranged for a plane to evacuate them on May 8, 2020.
Kenya's ambassador to China Sarah Serem in a statement on Friday, May 1, voiced concerns that Kenyans had failed to book the flight back despite the Chinese government providing the much-needed assistance.
She stated that on May 8, Kenya Airways flight KQ 883 would be leaving Guangzhou for Nairobi, following communication regarding the travel to Kenya.
"As you are aware the flight is a special arrangement between the Government of Kenya and the Government of China following the closure of airspace and the cancellation of international flights as a result of the outbreak of the Coronavirus pandemic and in response to your distress call to be facilitated to go back home," Ambassador Serem stated.
"We know that although 183 registered their desire to travel back home, very few have bought their tickets as of today (May 1). Kindly know that the Government of China has been so gracious to us and they have extended an amnesty and issued exit visas to all those with an expired visa and overstays within the set timelines," she added.
The ambassador urged Kenyans to take advantage of the gesture and arrangement, noting that it would be very difficult to make such an arrangement again in the near future.
She asserted that before the end of the current Covid-19 situation, this might be the only opportunity available to those wishing to go home, and therefore, they should urgently book and secure the flight.
"For those with expired or lost passports, the embassy will facilitate with emergency travel documents, therefore urgently submit the relevant documents to the embassy," Serem pronounced.
She further advised them to obtain a Covid-19 health certificate before the return date.
"I would like to advise that we continue to observe the measures put in place to contain the pandemic. As Kenyans in China, we have every reason to be thankful to God. He has protected us from the pandemic," she concluded, urging that it was important to, therefore, continue observing safety measures in China and in Kenya.
Foreign Affairs Principal Secretary Macharia Kamau on April 28, 2020, revealed that those wishing to travel back to Kenya would have to part with Ksh 80,468 each almost Usd750.