COVID-19 CRISIS

Uhuru rules out lockdown for now, cites food provision capacity

President says he hopes Kilifi DG Saburi get 10 years in jail for being reckless.

In Summary

• Speaking on Kikuyu FM stations, Uhuru said that a lockdown of the country would be the last resort when all else had failed.

• He, however, warned that Kenyans must follow all the directives issued by the government if a lockdown was to be avoided.

President Uhuru Kenyatta during a live address at State House, Nairobi on March 25, 2020
President Uhuru Kenyatta during a live address at State House, Nairobi on March 25, 2020
Image: PSCU

President Uhuru Kenyatta on Tuesday morning said that his government did not want to lock down the country over Covid-19.

Speaking on Kikuyu FM stations, Uhuru said that this option would be the last resort when all else had failed.

"We do not want to lockdown Kenyans in their houses like in other countries because what will they eat," the President said.

 

He, however, warned that Kenyans must follow all the directives issued by the government if a lockdown was to be avoided.

"If we don't follow the directives given by the government we shall have no option than ordering for lockdown. But I know the implications of lockdown and that's why I don't want us to follow that route" Uhuru said.



The President said the total lockdown of the country is the last option on the table noting that if all Kenyans follow the guidelines and measures put in place so far, then the country would not need to go that route.

"We understand our people better. We know that a majority of Kenyans depend on daily activities to earn their livelihoods, therefore, we don’t need to lock down the country as long as we can strictly adhere to the measures already in place,"Uhuru said.

His comments come just a day after he announced that there will no longer be any movement in and out of Nairobi Metropolitan Area and three Coast Counties.

The decision by the National Security Council was as a result of Nairobi, Mombasa, Kilifi and Kwale having most of the reported cases of Covid-19.

Kenya has confirmed 158 cases from 4,277 test carried out since the first case was announced on March 13.

There have been four recoveries including that of the first patient as well as six deaths as a result of the virus which has been declared a world pandemic.

The President also said that there should be consequences for those who are reckless citing the case of Kilifi Deputy Governor Saburi.

 
 

"Do not be like the Kilifi Deputy Governor who moved recklessly despite the knowledge that he was possibly sick. And despite his position, I asked that he be arrested and I am hoping that he is jailed for 10 years," Uhuru said.