09-03-2021 by redazione
The curfew is less and less likely to be lifted in Kenya, judging by the percentages still above 10% (11.5% in the last 24 hours) and by the words of Health Minister Mutahi Kagwe.
In a long interview with The Standard newspaper, the Minister confirms that these days have been decisive and will be decisive until the 12th, the day on which the restrictive measures that want the country to be 'in bed' at 10 pm until 4 am would expire.
"We need to get back to below 5 per cent for a few days," is the thought of Kagwe, who assures that the government would like to return to seeing people free in the evenings, but perhaps the time has not yet come.
According to Kagwe, the country is in a critical phase in which it cannot afford distractions, because it is conducting, in parallel with the fight against the pandemic, a battle against the spread of greed, interests and bureaucracy.
After uncovering malpractices related to false Covid-19 swab results, the Ministry of Health fears that episodes of false vaccinations and bogus certificates could occur, which would be even more dangerous.
"We don't want any strange vaccine business to emerge," Kagwe said, "We know that so many have produced fake PCR certificates, so it would not be completely out of our imagination to see someone who can fake something else as well. So we need to make sure that when we license the private sector, these actors are trustworthy and known".
After getting doses and assurances from the Covax programme, which helps developing countries to receive a certain number of vaccines, Kenya is ready to buy more vaccines from India, but a big hand could come from the private sector, with all the risks this entails. In any case, the government has decided that the vaccine will be administered on a voluntary basis and only health workers and government employees will be obliged to do so.
In this very hard year, the hardest of my adult life," the Minister explained, "we have witnessed so-called scandals that have allowed us to identify situations within our system that need to be eliminated, even if there are more serious people than bad apples, but we have also learned that there are many people who are waiting for something to go wrong in order to take advantage of it. We will no longer allow this to happen.
But amidst the optimism, there is still concern that a spike in the number of infections witnessed by the percentages of the last few days could lead to a further extension of the measures, without even a small tweak, such as shifting the evening curfew by one or two hours. There is no talk of a third wave yet, but the situation is being closely monitored.
We don't have a trend yet," Kagwe reiterated, "because a few days don't mean there could be a new wave. What we have seen is an increase in the positivity rate in the last two weeks. It could still go up and then down again. We have to try to carry out between 5 000 and 7 000 tests a day, only then will we have reliable data".
So, according to the Minister, if the percentages in the few days before 12 March do not go down, it would be "irresponsible to tell people that they can stay out until any time".
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