Kenya has tightened the noose on visitors arriving from foreign countries in its new strategy in the fight against COVID-19.

Health CS Mutahi Kagwe announced it will be compulsory for people coming into the country from foreign countries to be vaccinated and produce vaccination certificates at entry points.

Speaking on Sunday during a fundraiser at a school in Kisii County, Mutahi said those who want to come into the country must get vaccinated before entering the country.

“That is why we are saying, and foreign countries are saying, If you want to get from Kenya to foreign countries you have to get vaccinated. Likewise, those who are in foreign countries and would wish to come to our Kenya and because they force us to get vaccinated before going to their countries, they must also get vaccinated in their countries before coming here,” the CS emphasised.

He reiterated the importance of being vaccinated and noted that it increases the chances of survival greatly in case one contracts the coronavirus.

Mutahi appealed to politicians to use their political platforms to sensitise and encourage their supporters to get vaccinated before they politick in every meeting.

“I plead with the politicians, please, before we engage in political matters in every gathering. Let us tell the people to please get vaccinated,” said Mutahi.

Mutahi also said the government is not forcing anyone to get vaccinated but said anyone who wishes to go to his office before getting vaccinated should just call him on the phone.

“We are not forcing anyone to get vaccinated but if you want to come to my office and you are yet to be vaccinated, just make a phone call, do not come, do not come because I do not know what you are bringing me in my office,” Mutahi said.

Currently, there is an increased demand for vaccines and the government has urged county governments to ensure adequate mobilization of communities through outreaches and opening more vaccination centres to meet the demand.

The government also said there are enough vaccines to cater for the population and under the World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines, the Ministry of Health has lowered the age of those to be vaccinated to 15 years and above.