Kenya Extends Covid Curfew And Bans Rallies

Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta has extended the nationwide 22:00-04:00 curfew by 60 days.

He has also banned all political gatherings for 30 days and put further restrictions on weddings and funerals.

It has been close to a year that Kenyans have had to stay indoors overnight, but the president said the extension was needed because of a surge in infections

In January there were less than 100 new infections a day, but in March the numbers rose to as high as 750 a day.

Mr Kenyatta has blamed a failure to observe Covid-19 restrictions behind the rise, and ordered authorities to crackdown, especially on politicians, whose recent rallies have widely been seen as super-spreader events.

The country has had a series of by-elections following the deaths of politicians, some because of Covid-19.

Opposition leader Raila Odinga has been put into quarantine after testing positive for coronavirus on Thursday.

Struggling pubs and restaurants, many barely afloat, must still close by 21:00.

President Kenyatta said these restrictions had cost the Kenyan economy more than $5.1bn (£3.6bn) last year.

But he insisted this was better than possibly losing 150,000 lives over the same period as projected by scientists, if restrictions were not in place.