The screengrab below shows a message that has been circulating among Kenyan WhatsApp users. It is being passed off as the new/possible coronavirus containment measures in the country as the curfew ends this weekend.
With COVID-19 outbreaks at different stages globally, governments are making changes from time to time on their restrictions to help regain normalcy.
In Kenya, the numbers currently stand at 2,340 confirmed cases, 78 deaths and 592 recoveries. Since the first case was announced, there has been gradual Implementation of public health measures and regulations.
These measures have ranged from social distancing and hygiene practices. Other interventions include the closure of all learning institutions, places of worship and restaurants, restrictions in the transport sector, border controls, suspension of flights, a dusk to dawn curfew, intermittent lockdowns and mandatory use of face masks in public.
The countrywide curfew imposed between 7 pm and 5 am in Kenya, as a containment measure, ends on June 6. Kenyans have been eagerly waiting to know whether President Uhuru Kenyatta will reopen the country this weekend after he hinted the same in his presidential address on May 23.
As such, there are many speculations as to what measures will be implemented going forward and a lot of misinformation has come with the wait.
A search for keywords from the message being forwarded shows that the message was shared word for word in a twitter thread by Tolu Ogunlesi, a special assistant to President Buhari, and the head of the COVID-19 Presidential Task Force (PTF), Nigeria.
BREAKING: Effective from tomorrow:
1. Nationwide curfew remains in place, timing now 10pm—4am.
2. Full opening of financial sector – normal working hours
3. Restricted opening of places of worship, (regular church & mosque services ONLY), to be based on State Govt protocols.
— tolu ogunlesi (@toluogunlesi) June 1, 2020
The measures were announced in a televised briefing led by the Chairman of Nigeria’s PTF, Boss Mustapha, on June 1, 2020. He said all decisions made in relation to the outbreak response were based on the thorough assessment of the PTF on COVID-19.
On April 27, 2020, the Kenyan government, through the Cabinet Secretary for Health, Mutahi Kagwe, allowed restaurants to operate, but under very strict instructions. This included mandatory testing of all restaurant staff.
President Kenyatta is yet to make an official address on the way forward. However, CS Kagwe has on June 4, in his latest COVID-19 update, made it clear that “Nobody has talked about re-opening, this is something that is still being looked at.” Talks are still ongoing to assess the situation before making any decisions on the same.
The message in circulation on WhatsApp has nothing to do with Kenya’s new containment measures, making the claims FALSE.