Kenyan Government Extends Curfew As Covid-19 Cases Surge

Kenyan Government on Friday extended a night curfew due to increased COVID-19 cases in the country.

Public gathering was also banned as a way of slowing the spread of the deadly virus which is in its third wave in some African countries, warning that hospitals were becoming overwhelmed in Kenya.

According to Mutahi Kagwe, the Kenyan Health minister all public gatherings were banned and government meetings should be either held virtually or postponed.

The East African country has in recent days witnessed a jump in cases from the Delta variant, with a positivity rate of 14 percent as of Friday compared to around seven percent last month.

Health Minister Mutahi Kagwe said the rate was at risk of rising further unless serious measures were taken.

“We continue to implore all Kenyans, including those who have received their COVID-19 vaccines, not to let their guard down,” Kagwe said after a meeting of the National Emergency Response Committee on Coronavirus.

“We are all responsible (for) bringing the cases down,” he said at a televised press conference.

Kenya has been under some form of curfew since March last year when the pandemic first hit, and Kagwe said it will be extended nationwide from 10 pm to 4 am until further notice.

In total, Kenya has recorded more than 200,000 cases and 3,910 deaths.

Kagwe said at the press conference that hospitals were being put under strain by the increased infections and urged the public to obey the health measures to stay safe.

“If you fall sick today, you will not get a hospital bed,” Kagwe said, adding that efforts were being made to increase the number of intensive care beds.

“I am not scaring you, I am telling you the reality.”

But the rollout of vaccines has been slow in Kenya, as in many parts of the developing world, partly due to the lack of supply.

As of Thursday only 1.7 million doses had been administered in the country of 52 million people in Kenya.

Like many of its neighbours, Kenya took swift action against COVID-19 at the onset of the pandemic, restricting movement and closing borders and schools.

In Uganda, there was partial lift in the lockdown where boda boda were allowed to resume operating but with only one passenger.

Religious gatherings are still allowed, but limited to a third of the venue’s capacity unlike Uganda where all churches were banned for 60 days. Maximum of 10 religious leaders allowed leading virtual prayers.

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