(President Uhuru Kenyatta)
By Marvin Chege
President Uhuru Kenyatta on Saturday June 6 announced the extension of the nationwide dusk to dawn curfew for another 30 days during his nationwide address at State House in Nairobi.
However he adjusted the curfew times meaning it would begin at 9pm and end at 4am.
“The commencement time for the same shall be varied from 7 pm to 9 pm with the end time for the same being varied from 5 am to 4 am. Therefore, effective 7th June 2020, the nationwide dusk-to-dawn curfew will run from 9 pm to 4 am,” he announced.
In addition, he announced the extension of the cessation of movement in and out of Nairobi Metropolitan Area, Mombasa as well as Mandera for a further 30 days.
He also announced the end of cessation of movement in and out of Eastleigh in Nairobi and Old Town in Mombasa effective 4am on Sunday June 7.
“I direct that the cessation of movement in Eastleigh and Old Town Mombasa shall lapse at 4 am on June 7.
“The cessation of movement in Kilifi and Kwale Counties shall also lapse at 4 am on June 7,” he directed.
Uhuru however stated that the ban of all forms of gathering including bars would be extended by another 30 days.
He had also directed that schools would re-open in September 2020, with the Ministry of Education set to announce the new school calendar by the middle of August.
He also announced that Kenya had recorded 126 new Coronavirus cases with four deaths, bringing the total tally to 2,600 with 83 deaths.
Kenyatta attributed the low cases to the restrictions set in March 2020, after Kenya reported its first Coronavirus case.
I wanted to open and it was my desire. All who wanted to open are right, same as those against it. If we had not taken the actions we had taken, approximately 75,000 Kenyans would have lost lives,” Kenyatta stated.
“Our health system should also be beefed up before we decide if we shall open. There are counties which have 10 beds in isolation and have already recorded 9 cases,” he added.
The President disclosed that he had convened a session of the National and County governments coordinating summit to consider reviewing the effectiveness of the containment measures we have taken so far.
He noted that the precautionary measures instituted by the government had aided in reducing the infection rates in the county.
“Relaxing measures by 20 percent would lead to 200,000 infections and 30,000 deaths by December. Relaxing measures by 40 percent, infections would peak in November with 300,000 infections and 40,000 deaths. Relaxing by 60 percent would peak infections in October to 450,000 and 45,000 deaths,” he stated.
The Head of State noted that it wasn’t an easy decision when it came to deciding to reopen the economy.
“We took the time to come up with long-term strategies with regard to the cessation of movement. If we lift the ban, how will this help fight the pandemic? If we don’t, how does this affect the economy? We turned to our experts. Opinions were divided.
“We asked for the best and worst-case scenarios. We must speak the truth to each other. Had we not taken the measures, we would have peaked at 800,000 infections by July 30. By the end of August, at least 75,000 Kenyans would have lost their lives,” he stated.