Kenya Restricts Travel Into, Out of Capital Amid Virus Surge


Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta announced restrictions on movement into and out of the capital, Nairobi, and four other counties in a bid to reverse a recent surge in the coronavirus infections.

International travel will continue in accordance with existing guidelines, including the requirement that persons coming into Kenya posses a negative Covid-19 test certificate, Kenyatta said in a live broadcast on Friday.

The East African nation saw its virus positivity rate jump to 19% from 2.6% at the beginning of the year. Confirmed cases stand at 126,170 and 2,092 fatalities as of March 25, according to the health ministry.

“Kenya is squarely in the grip of the third wave of this pandemic,” Kenyatta said. “The death rate is devastating by all measures; and the stress the pandemic is placing on our health system is unparalleled.”

The night-time curfew in the five most affected counties -- Nairobi, Machakos, Kiambu, Kajiado and Nakuru -- will last 8 p.m. to 4 a.m. The must-stay-indoors order will continue to take effect from 10 p.m. for the rest of the country.

Kenyatta also announced the suspension of all in-person meetings of the cabinet, except for the National Security Council. Sittings of parliament and county assemblies in the affected regions are also temporarily banned.

The third wave will likely peak in 30 days at about 3,000 cases daily, Kenyatta said.

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