Mixed reactions on re-introduction of face masks

The government through the Health Ministry Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe has re-introduced the wearing of face masks in public places such as supermarkets, public transport and also in places of worship.

According to Kagwe, the sharp rise in numbers of new infections requires urgent steps to prevent the slide into a crisis due to COVID-19 that was experienced in 2020.

Kenyans had started getting comfortable after the government in March lifted the mandatory ban of wearing masks. Residents of Kiambu have however mixed reactions following the re-introduction of the masks by the CS.

Speaking to KNA yesterday, Andrew Njoroge, who runs a shop in Kiambu town was happy with the re-introduction of the masks considering a lot of people had succumbed to the disease.

He explained that the re-introduction of the masks also is a blessing in disguise for him as he had been selling masks before and it was important for Kenyans to adhere to the government’s calling.

“Before wearing masks was made optional, I used to sell over 5 boxes of masks in a day but it was reduced to two boxes. Following the announcement by government I have already sold over 7 boxes which is good for business,” Njoroge said.

Jane Gathoni, a wholesale trader said, “I sold all my stocks at a throw away price when the government lifted the ban on wearing masks. That was a disappointment but since I do not want to give up, I am willing to risk and bring in more to start selling.”

During the CS address, he called upon all Kenyans to be careful urging those who are exhibiting a cold or flu like symptoms to stay at home, avoid crowded places and gatherings so as to reduce exposure and transmission of respiratory infections.

Kamau Evans a street vendor within Kiambu town, told KNA that even after the ban of wearing masks was lifted, he continued to wear his because he had experienced what the disease can do after getting a bout of COVID-19 and getting well.

“My family and I have been wearing masks. We have lost relatives and I would not wish to see any more deaths due to COVID-19. I urged Kenyans who are looking at the situation as a punishment to know that it is a matter of life and death and that they should not take the precaution lightly.

According to Kagwe, the reviews have been based on and guided by analysis of the prevailing epidemiological situation of the pandemic in the country and the region, whilst taking into account the situation in other jurisdictions.

The country has experienced an upsurge in new Covid-19 infections in recent days with Monday reporting 246 new cases from a sample size of 1,993 tests translating to a positivity rate of 12.6 percent.

This situation has also seen the Ministry of health launch an accelerated vaccination campaign to increase the number of Kenyans who have not been vaccinated as well as those who have not received the booster jabs.

At the close of the day Monday, a total of 18,589,484 doses had been administered with 8,580,397 adults having been fully vaccinated. 341,473 teenagers have also been fully vaccinated while 406,042 persons had already received their booster shot. The proportion of adults fully vaccinated stands at 31.5 percent.



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