President Kenyatta flags off first dispatch of COVID-19 vaccines


President Kenyatta flags off first dispatch of COVID-19 vaccines
President Uhuru Kenyatta flags off the countrywide distribution of the Covid-19 vaccine at the Central Vaccine Depot in Kitengela, Kajiado County ahead of the launch of a national vaccination campaign on March 5, 2021. PHOTO| PSCU

President Uhuru Kenyatta has flagged off the first dispatch of vaccines from the National Vaccine Depot in Kitengela to other parts of the country.

Nearly half of the 1 million AstraZeneca vaccines which arrived in the country on Wednesday were released to the nine regional depots ahead of the administration exercise scheduled to begin on Friday.

The Head of State emphasized on the need to have the vaccine availed widely and at a cheap cost, assuring that the government would acquire more doses to combat the virus.

“If you ask any expert, there is no country that will be able to be safe unless all of us are safe. So we all have an obligation to make sure this vaccine is made available as widely, cheaply and quickly as possible to all citizens of the globe. We will get more and more doses until we meet our requirement,” said Kenyatta.

He reiterated the Government’s commitment to ensure the success of the vaccination exercise and urged Kenyans to continue observing Covid-19 containment protocols including wearing of face mask and social distancing.

“This does not remove from every single citizen the obligation and duty to maintain the health protocols that have been given by our doctors and health experts. We must continue with face mask wearing, handwashing and social distancing because ultimately these are the facts that will ensure we combat this deadly virus that has infected the globe,” he said.

At the same time, the Head of State cautioned Kenyans to stop peddling falsehoods on the Covid-19 vaccination exercise saying frontline health workers and service providers will be the first in line to receive the vaccine.

The quantity of vaccines for each county is determined by the number of frontline workers. The initial distribution of the first 495,000 doses  gives the Nairobi regional store the highest quantity of 138,000 doses, Kisumu (54,000), Nakuru (54,000), Mombasa (42,000), Kakamega (42,000), Garissa and Meru 21,000 and Nyeri (18,000). Level 6 hospitals will receive 33,000 doses and military level 4 hospitals  21,000 doses.

The next batch of vaccines is expected in the country either by the end of March or early April.

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Story By Benjamin Muriuki
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