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Gov’t warns those meddling with vaccination process 

Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe, has asked people seeking Covid vaccination to ensure they strictly visit authorized designated locations only for the jab.

Kagwe at the same time stressed that Covid vaccine is administered free of charge, advising Kenyans to report  through the Ministry of Health Covid-19 hotline number 719 any facility or health workers soliciting for pay in exchange for vaccination.

Acting Canada High Commissioner to Kenya David Anthony William Da Silva, together with Health Principal Secretary Susan Mochache at JKIA to receive a consignment of AstraZeneca vaccines donated by the Canadian Government. Photo by Wangari Ndirangu

He warned those with ill motives to jeopardise the process of vaccination, either by attempting to gain some political mileage or by action that could endanger lives of Kenyans that they will face the law.

“I want  to urge all Kenyans and people who reside in Kenya, to make sure they get vaccinated at designated vaccination sites and to remember that  all vaccines are being offered free of charge,” he stressed.

In a speech read on his behalf at JKIA, yesterday, by Principal Secretary (PS), Susan Mochache, when receiving a donation of 459,000 AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccines doses from Canada, the CS said the government has continued to receive claims that some people are paying to get vaccinated.

This, he noted, is contrary to the government policy on Covid-19 management, urging Kenyans to report any facility or health worker seeking for pay through the Ministry of Health, Covid-19 response line 719, or through the regular Ministry telephone numbers and email address.

Kagwe explained that the Health Ministry has clearly listed the vaccination sites where people can go and get the jab and that the list is easily accessible and published on the Ministry’s website.

In the event of difficulties, the CS encouraged all those seeking the service, to visit the website for additional information, to use 719 or any other government regulatory bodies and agencies.

“I want to reiterate once again that the vaccination against Covid-19 is free of charge, whether in a private facility or in a public hospitals or any other designated sites. It is therefore, illegal and immoral for anyone to take advantage of this process, for purpose of political gain to profiteer or seek political capital out of it. Let us keep vaccines out of politics, this is a matter that is grave and threatens our survival,” Kagwe.

In reference to the unfortunate incident over the weekend in Murang’a, where some politicians mobilised a vaccination drive, Kagwe said that the relevant government agencies have pursued the matter that has led to the arrest of seven people and they are in hot pursuit of the master mind who happens to be a doctor.

Health Principal Secretary Susan Mochache speaking to the press after receiving doses of AstraZeneca vaccine donated by Canadian government. Photo by Wangari Ndirangu

Kagwe noted that the Ministry in collaboration with other relevant security agencies, will ensure the concerned individuals are nabbed and made to face the full force of the law for their actions.

He thanked the Kenya Medical Practitioners and Dentists Council for their swift action that led to the immediate revocation of vaccination license for the concerned facilities.

“The nurse who handled the vaccines if found culpable by the Nursing Council, will have her license revoked and the concerned hospital also has two weeks to account for the vaccines,” Kagwe said.

He said the Ministry of Health expects total cooperation from both the health care workers, and those charged with the deployment of vaccines from government stores and even in the health centres.

“We are making a special appeal to all our health care workers to remain true to their professional oath, but even as I make this appeal, I know that many are doing the right thing and I thank you,” he said.

Kagwe thanked the Government of Canada for their generosity and urged all those charged with the responsibility of undertaking the vaccination exercise, to do so with diligence.

Meanwhile, the Government has clarified that it has received 459,000 AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccines doses from Canada.

In a statement to clarify the consignment last evening, Health Cabinet Secretary (CS), Mutahi Kagwe, explained that initially the government was expecting the delivery to arrive in two batches of 358,200 and another of 101,100.

However, he said, after checking the packages it has been discovered that both consignments had been lumped together and therefore as opposed to the 358,200 doses earlier reported to have landed, the exact consignment that the government received yesterday morning was 459, 300 doses of vaccines.

“I would also like to urge all those who are due for the second dose of AstraZeneca to visit the designated health facilities, as there are enough doses to cater for them.

As of September 1st, 2021, Kagwe confirmed that, a total of 2,807,945 vaccines have so far been administered across the Country.

Of these, he added, the total first doses are 2,000,285 while second doses are 807,660.

“The uptake of the second dose among those who received their first dose is at 40.4 per cent with the majority being males at 55 per cent while females are at 45 per cent and the proportion of adults fully vaccinated is 2.96 per cent.

The uptake of the second dose by Priority Groups is that those aged 58 years and above 240,293, Health Workers 134,576, Teachers 123,066 while Security Officers are at 67,736 and Others 241,989.

By Wangari Ndirangu

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