SAWT BEIRUT INTERNATIONAL

| 8 December 2021, Wednesday |

Kenya restricts access for unvaccinated to increase inoculations before year-end

Kenya will require people seeking government services to be fully vaccinated against the coronavirus beginning on December 21, as authorities ramp up vaccinations ahead of the year’s end holiday season.

According to Health Secretary Mutahi Kagwe, the government will restrict in-person services at revenue, transportation, ports, immigration, and education agencies. According to Kagwe, the state will also restrict access to hospitals, prisons, game parks, as well as hotels, bars, restaurants, and businesses that serve 50 or more people per day.

President Uhuru Kenyatta wants at least 10 million people in the country of 53 million to be vaccinated against Covid-19 by the end of the year, as part of plans to help East Africa’s largest economy recover. So far, approximately 6.4 million vaccinations have been administered, with approximately 2.4 people fully immunized.

Virus cases in Kenya have decreased, with positivity rates ranging from 0.8 percent to 2.6 percent over the last two weeks. The government is concerned about new spikes during the Christmas season next month, as well as increased political gatherings ahead of next year’s general elections.

“The current decline in the number of new infections may be attributed to a buildup of immunity through both natural exposure to the disease and the ongoing vaccination exercise,” Kagwe explained.

“However, we recognize that it is not yet time to celebrate.”

To increase the number of people immunized, a 10-day mass vaccination campaign will begin on November 26. The Kenyan Pharmacy and Poisons Board has also granted emergency approval for the use of Pfizer Inc.’s vaccines on teenagers.

Since March 2020, Kenya has reported 254,629 COVID-19 cases and 5,325 deaths.