Africa-Press – Kenya. The government has clarified the recent raft of changes announced by Health Cabinet Secretary, Mutahi Kagwe, imposing mandatory vaccination on persons seeking government services starting December 21.
National Taskforce on Vaccine Deployment Chairperson, Willis Akhwale, clarified the matter noting that Kagwe’s statement was misunderstood.
Justifying the measures put in place while speaking to Citizen TV on Tuesday, November 23, Akhwale stated that the jab will not be mandatory. He made it clear that the measures will only apply to people seeking to get in-person services who will be required to produce a certificate in order to receive government services.
That means those with no certificates will only receive services online or via phone calls.
Akwale added that Kagwe did not issue threats but just laid out the agreed procedures on vaccine inoculation.
“There is no threat, secondly there has been a misunderstanding, if you go back at the speech by CS Kagwe he said in-person services. What the CS proclaimed are measures that are so critical in enhancing the war against the pandemic and prepare us on what is happening in Europe where we are seeing upsurges.
“We have evidence that unvaccinated transmit the virus more than the vaccinated,” stated Akwale.
Akhwale added that the CS has powers to institute such measures in the country as enshrined in the Health Act. That is where some some human rights are limited.
Among the government services that unvaccinated Kenyans will be locked out from include Education, National Transport Service Authority (NTSA), Immigration, hospital and prison visitations, and port services among others.
Kagwe, said it will also be mandatory for all drivers, matatu conductors, boda boda riders, pilots, air hostesses and Kenyans working in the transport sector to show proof of full vaccination at all times.
“All businesses serving 50 or more people a day, will be required to put up signage requiring proof of vaccination, before entry into their premises and their patrons should be fully vaccinated.”
The measures could also apply to public gatherings where attendants will be required to produce their certificates to be admitted.
“We have given time for Kenyans to get the vaccine by December 21. As much as we will enforce these measures, accountability on implementing these measures will lie on individuals,” Kagwe concluded.