Pressure on Kenyan government to lift Covid-19 restrictions

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A section of MPs has requested the government to emulate some European nations like the UK by eliminating all restrictions it had imposed to avert the spread of Covid-19.

Two lawmakers allied to the Orange Democratic Movement party on Tuesday moved a bill in the Parliament seeking to have the government do away with curfews and travel restrictions.

The National Assembly Minority Leader John Mbadi and MP linked the country’s economic stagnation to the restrictions, saying many Kenyans are suffering from job losses and business closures.

They asked President Uhuru Kenyatta’s administration to remove dusk to dawn curfew to allow night travel.

They want the restrictions replaced with less stringent yet equally effective and economy-friendly containment measures to allow businesses to thrive.

The duo proposed to have people not vaccinated barred from accessing workplaces and other premises.

“This House, therefore, urges the national government to roll out mass vaccination campaign that includes restricted access to work premises by non-vaccinated employees,” read motion moved by legislator Nassir.

As of August 8, 2021, 1,804,375 vaccines had been administered.

The party also wants the government to roll out the Covid-19 Economic Stimulus Program to benefit Kenyans and cash transfer packages to the elderly, orphans, the vulnerable, and the needy.

Before the motion, the government of Kenya had embarked on easing restrictions imposed in March 2020. On Monday, public service vehicles were given the green light to carry full capacity in strict adherence to Covid-19 protocols.

On Tuesday, all civil servants were ordered to go for the jabs latest August 13 or face discipline.

The Head of Public Service, Joseph Kinyua, said a National Security Advisory Committee decided that all civil servants will be prioritized in the ongoing mass vaccination drive.

He ordered principal secretaries and accounting officers to ensure full implementation of the committee’s decision.

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