Churches will soon be reopening under strict guidelines after President Uhuru Kenyatta directed the Ministries of Interior and Health to put in place protocols that will pave way for communal worship.
Speaking Monday during his 57th Madaraka day State address President Uhuru Kenyatta called on the concerned teams to fast-track talks in view to developing protocols that will be adopted to guide a more participatory way of worship while guaranteeing the safety of worshipers.
“I share the heavy hearts of all the faithful who can no longer congregate and share in worship of The Almighty. I direct the Ministry of Interior and the Ministry of Health to continue and hasten their engagement with religious leaders”, he said in his virtual address.
Since the reopening of eateries and restaurants in April, church leaders have been piling pressure on the government to consider reopening places of worship.
The government has maintained it is still working with experts who have been modelling possible outcomes.
Churches in the country were closed in March after the pandemic hit the country. Many churches have resorted to online services while some air their sermons on selected TV stations.
The President spoke amid rising Covid-19 infections with the country national tally nearing 2000. He said he was aware of the emerging trend of infections but advised Kenyans to do everything possible to bounce back.
He said although the containment measures and protocols issued by the Government have constrained freedoms and our way of life, they are necessary.
“We need not be persuaded as a people why we must do everything in our power to conquer this invisible enemy – the coronavirus disease. But to do so, and regain the ground we have lost, we must come together as a Nation. Each one of us is called to become a Shujaa against this Disease,” He added.
On education, the Head of State directed the Ministry of Education to fast-track and finalizes the ongoing consultations with the stakeholders that will provide an appropriate calendar for a gradual resumption of education in the country.
”I appreciate the anxiety weighing heavy on the minds of parents and children – particularly those preparing for the national examinations”.
He advised that the guidelines should also include protocols to be followed by all learning institutions to guarantee the safety of our children.
The Ministry of Health projected that the rates of Covid-19 infections are likely to hit a peak in August-September.
Education CS has remained non-committal on when schools will reopen and asked parents to prepare for an extension of dates if the virus is not contained.
While speaking after receiving an interim report of the Covid-19 National Education Response Education committee, the CS maintained that the health and safety of learners and teachers remains a priority and not national exams.
He said his office will be giving updates on the current situation regarding the education sector based on the advice of the Ministry of Health.