President Uhuru Kenyatta has announced the return of sporting activities in the country a month after suspension due to rise of COVID-19 infections.
Announcing the new directive on Saturday, May 1, during Labour Day celebrations, President Uhuru said Government reached the decision after COVID-19 infections reduced significantly.
The Head of State, however, pointed out that the resumption shall be guided by the regulations issued by the Ministry of Health (MOH) and the Ministry of Sports headed by Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed.
“That the resumption of sporting activities shall be guided by the regulations to be issued by the Ministry of Health jointly with the Ministry of Sports,” President Uhuru said on Saturday.
Between March and April, the infection rate in Nairobi went down by 74 per cent.
In the other four counties (Kiambu, Nakuru, Kajiado and Machakos), it reduced by an average of 72 per cent.
Uhuru also reviewed the curfew hours in the zoned counties. Beginning midnight, curfew hours in the five regions will start at 10pm and end at 4am, unlike previously when it was set at 8pm to 4am.
Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe asked sports stakeholders last month to wait on the health experts’ verdict for sports to resume in the country.
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“There is a lot of pressure on the Government to open up the sports industry but such a decision must be led by facts and science, but not feelings,” Kagwe pointed out.
Kagwe further hit out at athletes who do not observe COVID-19 containment measures putting their lives at risk.
“We know ourselves better. You will see some people instead of isolating themselves, you spot them in the sports areas contacting themselves.
“As much as we sympathise with our athletes, we have no choice other than to keep the containment measures at least until we come down to a level that is understandable,” said the Health CS.
The suspension of sports from March has had a huge impact on the FKF Kenyan Premier League, the Kenya Cup, the Kenya Basketball League and the National Volleyball League among others.