Court says order against mandatory Covid jab still in force - Beaking Kenya News

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Wednesday, 5 January 2022

Court says order against mandatory Covid jab still in force


The High Court has reiterated that an order stopping the government from demanding proof of Covid-19 vaccination from Kenyans before they get crucial services or before being allowed to enter certain establishments is still in force pending the determination of one of the cases filed by Mr Enock Aura.

High Court Judge Anthony Mrima said this Tuesday when he consolidated five cases that are challenging the government's decision to enforce mandatory vaccination against Covid-19.

The order dated December 14, 2021 suspended government's decision to prevent those who are not fully vaccinated against Covid-19 from accessing services and entering public places such as national parks, bars and restaurants.

The state had announced that it would require people to show vaccination certificates to access in-person government services such as hospitals, schools, tax and immigration offices among others.

The other petitions were filed by legal advocacy group Kituo Cha Sheria, Mr Eliud Matindi, lawyer Winfred Clarkson Otieno Ochieng and Mr Bernard Soluga.

Demanding jab certificates

Justice Mrima confirmed the temporary orders are still in force after lawyer Harrison Kinyanjui, representing Mr Aura, complained that some shopping malls, supermarkets and other stakeholders in the hospitality sector were demanding vaccination certificates from their clients.

"There is blatant breach of the orders dated December 14, 2021 as there are some entities enforcing the impugned directive issued by the Ministry of Health by demanding proof of vaccination as precondition to offer services or entry. It is contemptuous and we may be forced to put contempt application against them," said Mr Kinyanjui.

The National Assembly, through lawyer Sheriffsam Mwendwa, informed the court that it is yet to receive the directives issued by Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe last month in an attempt to mitigate the spread of Covid-19 and ensure Kenyans take the jab.

"Parliament is yet to receive any proclamation from the Ministry of Health on the matter. The petitions were filed prematurely," said Mr Mwendwa.

Justice Mrima directed the parties to exchange their pleadings as he fixed the matter for hearing on February 2, 2022.

Illegal and unconstitutional

The petitioners believe that it is illegal and unconstitutional for the government to limit its services to only the people who have been vaccinated against covid-19.

One of the petitioners, Mr Ochieng, argues that the constitutional rights of more than 24 million Kenyans risk violation with no recourse.

He says the directives have the potential of locking out government services to a substantial part of the population especially where there is no alternative to in-person service.

The government’s services that may be affected include KRA services, education, immigration services, hospital and prison visitation, NTSA and port services among others.


Mr Kagwe also stated that all drivers, conductors, bodaboda riders, pilots, air hostess and all others working in the sector should be fully vaccinated and carry proof of vaccination at all times.

In regard to public places, the minister said people should show proof of vaccination for admission into national parks and game reserves.

In relation to hotels, bars and restaurants, he directed that all businesses, including small and medium enterprises servicing over 50 people a day, should put up signage requiring proof of vaccination and their patron’s to be fully vaccinated.

“All indoor gatherings to be limited to two thirds capacity with proof of Covid-19 vaccination of all in attendance,” he directed.    BY DAILY NATION   

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