Kenyan government continues school re-opening plan

The Kenyan Ministry of Education is expected to supply all schools with desks and lockers today—funded via a government stimulus

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Photo: The Standard

The Kenyan Ministry of Education is expected to supply all schools with desks and lockers today—funded via a government stimulus package—in the next step towards the phased reopening of schools from COVID-19 lockdown measures.

Schools partially reopened junior grades on October 12 after six months of lockdown. The reopening is part of a wider lifting of public health measures by President Uhuru Kenyatta’s government. On September 28, public bars reopened and restaurants were re-authorised to sell alcohol, while curfews and crowd limits eased.

Kenyatta is likely to proceed with caution in opening up Africa’s third-largest economy. The economy will most certainly remain vulnerable in the near future. With GDP contracting for the first time since 2008 in the second quarter, by 5.7%, analysts expect a recovery of sorts in this current quarter but likely a contraction overall for the year.

However, Kenya has struggled to arrest new COVID-19 cases, and the country has over 44,000 total reported cases and 825 deaths thus far. Expect Kenyatta to reimpose restrictions if a second wave causes a significant spike in case and death numbers.