New Variants, New COVID Containment Challenges: Quantifying the Surge

Early signs of Kenya’s third wave getting disrupted by the Indian variant

Nashon J. Adero
5 min readMay 21, 2021


Key Highlights

The emerging trend of new cases since the Indian variant was confirmed in Kenya, 15 cases reported as of May 12, has been shifting the COVID curve upwards. Kenya has consequently moved from the 8th to the 7th position in Africa’s list of top country cases.

The emerging curve in Kenya has the potential to be a ravaging wave on a decisively westward course, and one whose track can only be reversed using resolute countermeasures and timely anticipatory interventions.

Key factors such as citizen behaviour and testing efficacy aside, the newly detected Indian variant ravaging the western city of Kisumu must be a critical part of the new equation of growth for the recent surge of COVID-19 cases in western Kenya and the overall rise in the national tally.

The earlier model projection of the third COVID wave in Kenya possibly ebbing through a peak at 166,775 cases on May 26 was exceeded on May 20, six days earlier.

The new results are likely to accelerate the timelines and size of the fourth wave, which this modelling series predicted would pick up the pace in July.

Overview of the Changing COVID-19 Status Map

As at May 20, 2021, more than 165.7 million COVID-19 cases had been recorded globally with a case fatality rate of 2.1% and a recovery rate of 88%. Africa had recorded more than 4.7 million cases with a case fatality rate of 2.7% and a recovery rate of 90%. Kenya had recorded a total of 166,876 cases with a case fatality rate…



Nashon J. Adero

A geospatial and systems modelling expert, lecturer, youth mentor and trained policy analyst, who applies system dynamics to model complex adaptive systems.