Uhuru lifts lockdown rules imposed in March, extends ban on rallies

President Uhuru Kenyatta has assured parents and learners that the school calendar will remain unchanged as he lifted a range of lockdown curbs imposed in March.

“All education institutions in all levels of learning shall re-open in accordance with the calendar issued by the Ministry of Education,” the President said in State House while marking Labour Day celebrations.

The education sector is among those hit hard by the pandemic, which saw learners staying at home for a period of nine months before resuming physical learning late last year.

At the same time the Head of State lifted the current ban on travel into and out of the disease infected counties of Nairobi, Kiambu, Kajiado, Nakuru and Machakos on March 26.

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The curfew hours in the five-county zone have been revised to between 10pm and 4am effective midnight, May 1.

The President noted that new Covid-19 cases in Nairobi have eased to below 15,000 in April from 56,815 in March, representing a 74 per cent drop in infections in the capital county.

“Data from our medical experts suggest the same trend in the zoned areas we put on lockdown during my March 26, 2020 address. After one month of lockdown, Covid-19 caseload within the zoned areas has come down by 72 per cent,” the President said.

In the other counties, Covid-19 caseload dropped by 89 per cent in Mombasa and 90 per cent in Busia between March and April, Mr Kenyatta said.

On other reviews, in-person and congregational worship in the five-county zone has also received the greenlight to resume but in strict observance to guidelines issued by the Inter-Faith Council and Ministry of Health.

The attending congregation will, however, be limited to a third of the capacity of the place of worship.

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The operation of restaurants and eateries in the zoned areas, which had been operating on take away services only, will resume in person services, but in line with the guidelines issued by the Ministry of Health and Ministry of Tourism and Wildlife.

This year’s Labour Day speech comes with slight reprieve for bar owners across Kenya as the Head of State also allowed the businesses to open up to 7pm, effective midnight.

However, the ban on political gatherings has been extended until otherwise directed.

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