Last year, the Health ministry sealed all the loopholes that its naysayers could use to pin them down for not reaching the vaccination target by December.
The National Covid-19 Vaccine Deployment and Vaccination Task Force strove to ensure 10 million Kenyans had received at least a single dose of the vaccine. Of those, less than half were fully vaccinated. The government then set another target to reach 27 million people by June this year.
Meanwhile, the World Health Organization (WHO) and partners set a 70 percent vaccination target for African countries.
After receiving accolades for having hit its target, the ministry behaved like a student who passes one examination but forgets to prepare for the next one. The government failed—terribly. Data shows Kenya has fully vaccinated only 18 million people, missing the global target by a whopping 39 per cent.
The ministry enticed the disgraceful results by insinuating that we had defeated Covid-19 and lifted most of the containment measures. How absurd, that the same person who asked Kenyans not to treat the coronavirus “abnormally” went ahead to peculiarly make audacious announcements that made the people think they did not need a vaccine anymore.
It’s the inherent nature of human beings to only protect themselves when they sense danger but lack of it breeds relaxation. It’s not surprising, therefore, that after Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe relaxed the protocols, vaccination numbers dropped to 5,000 a day.
The rise in infection in the ongoing sixth wave has trebled the number of people willing to get the jab. Research has proven that the available Covid-19 vaccines have greatly helped in cutting down Covid-19 hospital admissions and deaths. The unvaccinated people, should another severe wave occur, will strain the healthcare system.
But why did the government stop its vibrant vaccination campaigns and only wait for a Covid-19 resurgence to mobilise people to get the jab? The ministry must account for all the resources set aside to help in vaccinating people against Covid-19 since we are not out of the woods yet.