Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta on Monday announced a “phased reopening” of the country by lifting the cessation of movement in the Nairobi Metropolitan Area, Mombasa and Mandera counties from Tuesday, June 7, 2020.
The three counties had been on lockdown as the government aimed to contain the spread of the coronavirus pandemic in the country.
However, the current 9 pm to 4 am curfew will remain in place for another 30 days, effective immediately.
“Today I order and direct that the cessation of movement into and out of the Nairobi metropolitan area, Mombasa county and Mandera county that is currently enforced shall lapse today or at 4 a.m. tomorrow, Tuesday the 7th of July 2020,” said Kenyatta in a televised 9th Presidential address on the Corona virus pandemic at Harambee House.
Kenyatta however, noted that the government would assess the directive in the next 21 days to observe the patterns of interaction. He stated that “By re-opening Nairobi, Mombasa and Mandera, we are more at risk than we were when the restrictions were in place.”
Should there be a spike in the trend of infections, the Head of State indicated that the country will have to return to lockdown on zero option.
“We must, therefore, exercise cautious optimism, and avoid reckless abandon. Should the situation deteriorate and pose a challenge to our health infrastructure, it shall be clawed back.
Any trends that signal a worsening of the pandemic, we will have no choice but to return to the lock-down at zero-option.”
The President announced that the places of worship will also commence convening but adhering to strict health guidelines.
However, congregants under 13 or over 58 years will not be allowed in the places of worship.
Sunday Schools and Madrassas will remain suspended until further notice.
“For us to revive the economy, reopen and remain open, the government and all citizens must pull together,” he added.