Surviving Covid-19 is now a personal task

What you need to know:

The law should apply equally irrespective of one’s station in life.

Once again, President Uhuru Kenyatta has placed the burden of combating spread of coronavirus on the citizens. The responsibility lies with individuals and precisely that means strict adherence to the health protocols.

This is where we have failed. Despite widespread information about safety protocols such as putting on mask, personal hygiene and social distance, the reality is that most of those of rules are violated with impunity, putting lives at risk.

Just three weeks since the government lifted the initial tough rules to contain the virus, the number of infections has soared to worrying levels.

Previously, the daily infections were reported in tens, but now they are in hundreds, with the highest figure in a single day standing at 967, as at the weekend.

Indeed, there is close correlation between the easing of restrictions and the rising cases.
In particular, we take exception at political leaders who brazenly violate the rules, thinking they are beyond punishment, and therefore setting bad example to the public.

LOCKDOWN

On this, we agree with President Kenyatta that those leaders, political or otherwise, must be sanctioned and made to pay for their actions.

The law should apply equally irrespective of one’s station in life. At any rate, the virus does not discriminate and nobody is immune or special.

Notably, the Head of State juggled between total lockdown and preserving the economy. Contrary to what the public thought, he did not stop movements across counties, and as we have argued before, that no longer appears tenable because the virus has permeated every part of the country.

We are at community stage where every region is affected. In fact, 44 out of the 47 counties have recorded infections and cannot now pretend to be protecting themselves from the virus. Outlawing travels would therefore be counter-intuitive as it won’t slow down infections.

At this point in time, the critical task is to enhance the capacity of the national and county governments to deal with increased infections, among others, providing adequate facilities and beds to hold those testing positive.

MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS

Although on paper, it is stated that 70 per cent of the counties have met the minimum requirements for containing the disease, including setting up facilities for isolation, critical evaluation of the situation on the ground indicates that just a few have met the threshold.

That is a point of concern because should the cases surge, the health facilities would be overwhelmed and with grave consequences.
The national and county governments have to put in more resources to deal with the crisis. Importantly, Kenyans have to back to the basics and guard against infections by acting responsibly.