Counties Preparedness to Determine Reopening of Economy-Uhuru

  • An image of President Uhuru Kenyatta
    President Uhuru Kenyatta chairing a virtual meeting with Governors on Thursday 25 June 2020.
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  • President Uhuru Kenyatta on Thursday, June 25 revealed that re-opening of the country's economy will depend on the level of preparedness by the counties to respond to Covid-19 infections.

    While addressing Governors in a virtual meeting from Statehouse, Uhuru asked Governors to take a leading role in curbing the spread of Covid-19 infections before he could reopen the economy.

    "County readiness to respond to new imported cases of infection will largely determine our national readiness to re-open the country as a whole.

    President Uhuru Kenyatta during a meeting with Permanent Representatives of various countries to the United Nations on Tuesday, June 16, 2020
    President Uhuru Kenyatta during a meeting with Permanent Representatives of various countries to the United Nations on Tuesday, June 16, 2020
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    "I say this because the nation is the sum total of all the 47 counties. If the counties have met the necessary thresholds, then the nation will be ready to re-open," explained the President.

    Deputy President Dr William Ruto and representatives of religious and business sectors were also present in the virtual meeting.

    Cabinet Secretaries for Health and Education, Mutahi Kagwe and George Magoha were also part of the extraordinary meeting.

    Chairperson of the Council of Governors, Governor Wycliffe Oparanya presented a progress report on the roll-out of the minimum Covid-19 response measures required ahead of the re-opening of the economy was presented.

    With the President stating during his state address on Saturday, June 6 that the minimum bed capacity per county is set at 300, Oparanya noted that counties had attained a total of 6,898 isolation beds against the national target of 30,500 units.

    The Kakamega Governor added that 12 counties had met the 300 per county isolation beds threshold while 34 devolved units were on course to meet the target within the month.

    Oparanya also gave an update on the number of health workers trained so far with a total of 16,914  trained on Covid-19 management and among them 59,449 community health volunteers.

    Out of the 27 counties, 36 counties have a cumulative sum of 343 ICU beds while 28 counties have a total of 337 ventilators.

    With a rise in the number of Covid-19 positive cases in the country, Ministry of Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe was against re-opening of the economy before the response preparedness threshold agreed upon is fully met.

    He attributed the rise in the number of cases to counties that had hastily reopened the economy without having proper Covid-19 containment protocols set up.

    Kagwe also urged counties to speed up the recruitment of the 8000 health workers under the Universal Health Coverage (UHC) program so as to boost the country's Covid-19 response capability.

    President Uhuru Kenyatta speaks to DP William Ruto outside KICC after PG meeting on Monday, June 22.
    President Uhuru Kenyatta speaks to DP William Ruto outside KICC after PG meeting on Monday, June 22.
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