Nairobi — Thirteen counties mostly in Nyanza and Western regions, listed as COVID hotspots on Thursday, were effectively placed under a revised 7 pm to 4 am curfew in new measures to contain the virus.
Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe said the counties of Busia, Vihiga, Kisii, Nyamira, Kakamega, Kericho, Bomet, Bungoma, Trans-Nzoia, Kisumu, Siaya, Homa-Bay and Migori accounted for 60 per cent of the national virus caseload in two weeks, hence the decision to declare them hotspot zones.
"The positivity rate in the aforementioned counties averages 21 per cent against a national average of 9 per cent," Kagwe noted.
He said their proximity to the neighboring Uganda which has been registering a spike in cases had contributed to the surge in infections in the listed counties.
Kagwe also announced a ban on all forms of gatherings and in-person meetings in the hotspot zone, including house parties and sporting activities.
The ban will also apply to all forms of physical/congregational worship (churches, mosques, temples and shrines) in the hotspot counties for a period of 30 days.
CS Kagwe however said the ongoing nationwide curfew shall continue to be observed in the rest of the country, from 10pm to 4am daily.
Funeral and interment ceremonies in the hotspot zone shall be conducted within 72 hours of confirmation of death, with night vigils and overnight processions prior to funerals also prohibited.
The number of attendees for funerals in the hotspot zone was capped at 50.
The new directive will take effect from June 18, 2021.