As Kenya takes delivery of 1.02 million doses of vaccines through the COVAX facility, the East African nation’s Minister of Health, Mutahi Kagwe remarked rather humorously that the days of fighting COVID-19 with “rubber bullets” have ended.
Kagwe described the vaccines as metaphorical “bazookas and machine guns” as the doses are expected to help the country lead a better charge against the virus.
The World Health Organisation, UNICEF, International Vaccine Alliance (GAVI), and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness were all on hand as the vaccines arrived in the East African country from India.
Kenya became the fourth country on the continent to receive the vaccines following Ghana, Ivory Coast and Nigeria, just on Tuesday.
The Kenyan Minister of Health said he expects the vaccine to help limit the spread of the virus and also redirect the nation to economic recovery.
Kenya will vaccinate more than 400,000 medical staff, with frontline health workers and people working in essential services also to be prioritised.
Health workers in the country are, however, unhappy after being forced to resume following a 70-day strike over the lack of Personal Protective Equipment to shield them against the disease.
Kenya has recorded more than 106,000 cases, with a fatality of 1800 recorded. The nation’s case fatality rate of over 1.6% is lower than the African average of 2.6%.