The government of Kenya that the wearing of face masks is once again mandatory in all public places in the country.
Amid a spike in Kenya’s COVID-19 positivity rate that had risen from a weekly average of 0.6% in early May to the current 10.4%, Kenyans are now required to don protective face masks at the supermarkets, open-air markets, planes, trains, public transportation vehicles, offices, houses of worship and political indoor meetings.
According to Kenya’s Cabinet Secretary in the Ministry of Health Mutahi Kagwe, the mask mandate has been reinstated to curb the further spread of COVID-19 infections in the country, and drastic measures are needed to avert strain on the local public health system.
“The sharp rise in coronavirus infections should concern everyone and we must take strong measures to prevent a slide into a public health crisis,” Kagwe said.
Kenyan government will accelerate coronavirus vaccination rate to prevent a spike in large-scale hospitalizations and fatalities, Kagwe added.
So far, the majority of new COVID-19 cases are mild and are being treated under state-funded home-based care programs, the secretary said, but the current cold season in Kenya and intensified political campaign activity ahead of August 9 general elections could worsen COVID-19 transmission rate.
Kenya’s Ministry of Health data shows that the country’s total number of confirmed COVID-19 positive cases stood at 329,605 as of Monday after 252 people tested positive in the last 24 hours from a sample size of 1,993, with the positivity rate standing at 12.6 percent.
The national capital city of Nairobi is the new COVID-19 infections central, closely followed by the neighboring county of Kiambu, while the port city of Mombasa and several western Kenyan counties had also recorded new coronavirus infection surge.