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Just 1,800 spectators allowed in tough precautions against Covid-19

Just 1,800 spectators allowed in tough precautions against Covid-19

Kenyan athlete Mercy Cherono keeps her mask on during a pre-event press conference at the Nairobi National Park on Friday

Nairobi, 3 October

Organisers on Friday confirmed that just 1,800 spectators will be allowed to go through the turnstiles to watch the Kip Keino Classic on Saturday (3 October).

Athletes, officials, media and service providers, along with the fans, will be taken through strict controls to guard against a possible spread of the coronavirus.

All the athletes for the Continental Tour leg are being subjected for mandatory counter Covid-19 testing on the backdrop of an initial PCR (polymerase chain reaction) clearance from their countries of origin.

The Institute of Primate Research, in collaboration with the Ministry of Health, have been conducting corona virus tests for athletes, officials and event staff.

Event medical team head, Dr Victor Borgoria, says: “We are testing to protect all the participants and its  only those who have PCR negative (results to be allowed to take  part in the event.

“And any breach of these rules and regulations may result in the cancellation of its accreditation and participation of agreement for the competition.

“Apart from testing some we have put in place guidelines provided by the Ministry of Health.”

“There are also some measures that we are taking apart from testing, on the track, field and on the side-lines.

“We shall restrict the number of athletes per event from the call room to their respective event, disinfect the room for the next group of athletes,” added Dr Borgoria.

The local organising committee said the limited spectors will allow them to observe the social distancing rule in accordance with the Ministry of health guidelines.

“Spectators are important to the athletes and we want them to be motivated and perform better, but we are also cautious hence the restriction the numbers. The rest of the athletics fans can follow from live broadcast and online streaming,” said Sports Principal Secretary, Joe Okudo.

Kenya’s coronavirus cases stood at 38,923 on Friday (3 October) with 725 deaths occasioned by the pandemic and a total of 25,114 reported cases of full recovery by Friday.

Non-contact sporting activities have been allowed to resume under Ministry of Health Guidelines and the Kip Keino Classic will mark a milestone in the gradual return of sports from Covid-19 pandemic suspension.

Kip Keino Classic basic Covid-19 rules

  • Wearing a mask covering the mouth and the nose is mandatory in all public areas at all time, except for these two exemptions;
  • Once seated at a table in the official hotel to eat their meal (once standing up to go get a new plate or to the bathrooms, it is required to wear a mask);
  • For athletes only: Once on the field of play, warm-up area, practice area and during interviews if at least 1.5 metres distance can be guaranteed (mask will have to be worn during transfers between these areas and the hotel);
  • Any interaction with an individual who is not accredited is prohibited at all time, either in the meeting areas (hotel, stadium...) or somewhere else;
  • Frequent hand washing;
  • Cough/sneeze in your elbow;
  • Keep your distance –1,5 metres apart;
  • No shaking hands, hugging or kissing;
  • avoid physical contact while greeting.