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Kenya suspends private imports of COVID-19 vaccines

Nairobi, Kenya (AP) – Kenya has ordered an immediate halt to private imports of coronavirus vaccines, citing fears that counterfeit vaccines could otherwise enter the East African country.

“To ensure transparency and accountability in the vaccination process, to protect the integrity of the country, the government today effectively maintains the window for the import, distribution and management of vaccines in the private sector, until then there is greater transparency and accountability. In the whole process, “the Kenyan National Emergency Response Committee said in a statement on Friday evening.

Private health facilities in Russia pay about $ 80 each for the Sputnik V vaccine, while Kenyan institutions provide free AstraZeneca vaccines that the government has received from the global COVAX initiative.

In recent weeks, the government has been working to improve the reluctant involvement of AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccine frontline workers. About 160,000 people have been vaccinated in more than a month so far.

Following the announcement of new restrictions on movement due to deaths due to coronavirus infections, President Uhuru Kenyatta led his cabinet on March 26 to conduct public vaccinations.

The Kenyan government says the country’s positive rate jumped from 2.6% in late January to 19.1% on April 2.

Separately, the British government says it will ban most travelers from Kenya from April 9, as many of them are positive about the version found in South Africa. Only UK nationals with a residence permit will be allowed to enter the UK from Kenya.

The British High Commission stressed that these are temporary measures.

Kenya responded on Saturday by forcing all passengers arriving or departing from UK airports to be quarantined for 14 days at public office at their own expense. Exceptions were given for cargo flights.

“This unilateral decision (by the UK) does not reflect the prevailing logic and scientific knowledge about the spread of the disease or epidemic. “Rather, the decision seems to be due to discriminatory policies against certain countries and peoples,” said the Kenyan Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

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