Citizen TV's Jamila Mohamed & Son Trapped in Canadian Hotel

  • Citizen TV Managing Editor Jamila Mohammed in studio in 2019.
    Citizen TV Managing Editor Jamila Mohammed in the studio in 2019.
    Instagram
  • Citizen TV managing Editor Jamila Mohamed is currently having a less than ideal trip in Canada following strict Covid-19 rules in the country that have seen her separated from her 16-year-old son.

    The seasoned journalist traveled into the country keen to adhere to all the protocols laid out with her son who got a scholarship and admission to a college in the town of Victoria.

    Once they arrived at the hotel, they were directed to stay in separate rooms, not to have any contact due to the quarantine restrictions that restricted their movements for 14 days.

    Citizen TV Managing Editor Jamila Mohammed pictured in November 2019.
    Citizen TV Managing Editor Jamila Mohammed pictured in November 2019.
    Instagram

    "I understood the precautions and why this had to happen but still, it was painful to hug him knowing that I would not be able to do it again for 14 days. We said goodbye and went into our separate but adjacent rooms," Jamila recounted.

    As of February 10, the two had spent six days in the hotel unable to leave and they had eight more to go to complete the mandatory days.

    "So far so good, these four walls of my hotel room and I are BFFs now. It’s clean, warm and comfortable. My son next door is also coping well.

    "We talk on the phone 10 times or more every day. He is always calling to remind me to pick my meal outside the door. Or to discuss meals we are not familiar with," she noted.

    As part of their stay there, the Kenyans are required to give a daily update on the Canadian government's Covid-19 monitoring app, giving information on how they are feeling in terms of symptoms as well as temperature.

    She added that they chat on the balcony  from a distance masked and the cold temperatures in the Northern Hemisphere limiting their interactions 

    As part of keeping up, Jamila disclosed that she had been trying to skip rope and exercise around the room, as well as take on her online classes for a Master's course she is studying for.

    In the room, they are supplied with towels, soap, garbage bags, bedsheets, tea bags, coffee and sugar.

    "Meals are provided three times a day at specific times and the food is left outside our rooms..a knock..and we have to count to 30 before opening the door, masked of course," she explained.

    After eating, they leave the dishes outside the room and the garbage is collected three times a week. 

    A photo shared by Citizen TV's Jamila Mohammed from her hotel room in Canada on February 10, 2020.
    A photo shared by Citizen TV's Jamila Mohammed from her hotel room in Canada on February 10, 2020.
    Twitter

    Quarantine Requirements in Canada

    The Canadian government directs that all foreigners must have a plan to quarantine for 14 days when they arrive in Canada, including a place to stay, how you’ll get to your destination,  get your groceries and access essential services and medical care

    This plan is mandatory, even if one has no symptoms and you will not be allowed to enter the country without one.

    A border services officer will determine if you can enter the country.

    The penalties for not following your quarantine plan once you’re in the country can include, a fine of up to $750,000 which translates to Ksh82.08 Million; 6 months of jail time and/or being found inadmissible, removed from Canada, and banned from entering for 1 year.

    A woman at the airport checking the arrival departure board
    A woman at the airport checking the arrival departure board
    File

    Only people who provide essential services, for example, truck drivers who regularly cross the border to maintain the flow of goods, are exempt from the quarantine requirements.