In mid-January, China reported that a school had conducted a variety of tests including serum anti-body tests, nasal, throat, and anal swabs, to all its staff, after a nine-year-old had tested positive for COVID-19.
A week later, a Chinese health official said that recent studies had shown that coronavirus survives longer in the anus or excrement than in samples taken from upper body tracts.
China has since embarked on collecting people’s anal swabs for testing, in what they say is a quest for accurate test results.
This recent move has caught people all over the world by surprise and has since elicited debate bordering on the inconveniences and ‘morality’ of the new methodology.
In fact, Chinese authorities were on Monday forced to come out and clarify to citizens that anal swab coronavirus tests will not make them “waddle like penguins”.
This was after a video purportedly showing people finding difficulties in walking went viral online.
Here in Kenya, men have expressed their distaste towards the new method of testing the novel virus.
“Nimeshtuka sana kuona mtandaoni kuwa Wachina wanasema watu wanapimwa kupitia huko reverse. Katika jamii yetu ya Wakalenjin ama Kenya, kitu kama hiyo haijawahi tendeka. Wachina waende wapimie reverse huko kwao lakini siyo Kenya. Hata mtu akiwa mgonjwa kiasi gani huwezi pima mtu huko nyuma. Hata heri korona aue sisi kuliko kupimwa uko nyuma. (I’m so surprised to hear the Chinese are introducing anal swabs. In our Kalenjin community or Kenya set-up, something of the sort has never happened. I prefer COVID-19 to kill me than to accept anal swab testing),” said one of the interviewees.
Pahali wamefika sasa wamekuja sana, Aiiii!!!! Ati sasa mimi nifungue suruali, niteremshe, niangalie upande huu mwingine wachukue vipimo huko nyuma!!!! Haiwezekani. (Honestly, this is too much!! How can I even think removing my pants, look the other side as a person works on my a**s?” another amused citizen wondered.
“Waafrika msikimbilie na kukubali kila kitu ambacho kinasemwa. Kama sasa unaanza kupima mahali ambayo mtu anajisaidia nayo, si hiyo sasa ni makosa, (We, Kenyans and Africans, should not be fond of embracing every foreign idea. Allowing anal swabs are against our principles and we should not tolerate that),” another Kenyan opined.
Kenya has so far recorded 100,856 confirmed COVID-19 cases ever since her first case in mid-March 2020.
83,907 patients have recovered from the disease, as 1,755 people have succumbed to the novel virus in Kenya.