Kenya threatened to withhold critical services from unvaccinated Kenyans.
On Sunday, the government unveiled a novel strategy to assist an ongoing COVID immunization drive, threatening to withhold critical services from Kenyans who refuse to take vaccinations.
Those who do not take immunizations, according to Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe, who was joined by his Tourism and Wildlife colleague Najib Balala, would be refused access to public transportation and hotels starting December 21.
Kagwe further said that the government would withhold vital services provided by the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA), the National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA), and other organizations.
“By December 21, 2021, everyone requesting in-person government services shall be completely vaccinated and provide evidence of immunization.” “These services will include, but will not be limited to, KRA services, education, immigration services, hospital and jail visiting, NTSA and port services, among others,” he added.
Some of the directions, according to Kagwe, are taken from the Public Health Act, which he claims enables the ministry to take such harsh steps, particularly during a pandemic.
The CS said that the action is intended to safeguard government personnel and other service providers, stating that “those who have been vaccinated would not endanger their lives helping others who have refused to get vaccinated.”
“No one is arguing that vaccination is required, but if you want to come to my office for services and everyone else is vaccinated but you aren’t, it’s unjust.” The law is unambiguous, and it is on our side. “The courts cannot compel someone who has been vaccinated to entertain someone who has not been inoculated,” Kagwe said.
“The main reason why all of us need to get vaccinated is to keep the economy functioning and to avoid hospitalization and people suffering at home,” he continued.
Balala further said that unvaccinated individuals would be refused access to hospitality facilities, and anyone who violate the rule will be held personally accountable.
“From December 21st, all national parks and protected places must request the same.” “What we want is to prevent the spread of illnesses since it will be a joyful season and we will celebrate and enjoy ourselves, but we need to do so while we are safe,” Balala said.
As of Sunday, 6.4 million individuals have been immunized, with 2.4 million completely vaccinated. By the end of the year, the government hoped to have vaccinated at least 10 million people.