President Uhuru Kenyatta, on Friday, March 12, extended the nationwide curfew by 60 more days from May 12 to May 12, 2021.
He added that all bars and social areas will also be closed by 9 pm, before the 10 pm to 4 am curfew.
The President pointed out that January’s positivity rate was at two percent but has risen to 13 percent in March 2021, an indication that Kenyans are not observing Covid-19 mitigation measures.
“Coronavirus has tested us to the limit. We also closed down our schools to preserve the lives of our students and also isolate the elderly from public events. This new normal showed new strength and our economy was in distress but never caved in,” Uhuru said.
He added that the Covid-19 pandemic attempted to overstretch County health infrastructure but governors remained unbowed and together with the national government, expanded the healthcare sector in the country.
Uhuru said that Kenya is yet to emerge from the war as the virus is still unseen and its rule of engagement is unwritten which keeps on mutating in UK, South Africa and other countries.
He reiterated that the vaccine rollout will be done in phases, and guided by the National Deployment Vaccination Plan with the first phase currently ongoing targeting frontline health workers, uniformed personnel and teachers.
The second phase will commence immediately Kenya receives its second consignment and will target the elderly and those will preexisting conditions.
“Vaccination shall be voluntary. Let’s keep ourselves safe and continue embracing the culture, civic duty and responsibility of minding ourselves and our brothers.
“The first line of defense is the people. We will win one half of the battle if we continue protecting ourselves,” the head of state urged.
He added that Kenya’s economy is likely to grow by 7 percent in 2021 despite the restrictions put in 2020.
The president also suspended all political gatherings for a period of 30 days warning those who will proceed to hold public rallies that they will face full force of the law. He said that each must observe the directive beginning with his office as the head of state.
In a show of solidarity and respect, the Deputy President William Ruto has said that all his planned visits and engagements are suspended indefinitely. This comes even as it has been confirmed that former prime minister Raila Odinga is suffering from COVID-19 and is currently in isolation at the Nairobi Hospital and receiving treatment.