By Mourice Seretta
The Kenya Prisons Service (KPS) on Tuesday officially launched the Covid-19 vaccination exercise for all it staff and inmates across the country.
The KPS Commissioner Genral Wycliffe Ogallo was the first to receive the jab at Prisons Headquarters in Nairobi.
Speaking during the launch, Commissioner Ogallo asked all the Prisons Staff to follow suit and get the jab saying that the vaccine will save them and enable them combat the deadly virus.
“We have more than 28 000 staff at the prisons service with more than 4, 000 inmates. We are going to ensure that they get the jab. It is not mandatory for everyone to get it but I urge my personnel to be vaccinated owing to the nature of the work that they do.” Ogallo said.
He further added that the department has been able to curb the spread of the virus in Kenya’s correctional facilities due to the measures that they had put in place in line with the Ministry of Health’s Covid-19 preventive measures.
Ogallo further stated that they will account for every vaccine that they will give out.
Dr Willis Akhwale, chairman of the COVID-19 taskforce for vaccine deployment and the vaccination process said they will be monitoring how the KPS will give out the vaccine and will later on give them another batch of the vaccine.
The service received half of the batch on Tuesday.
Dr Akwale took the opportunity to appeal to Kenyans not to fear to be vaccinated saying that the vaccine was clinically tested and good for human consumption.
“I would like to appeal to Kenyans to take the opportunity and get vaccinated. The vaccine is not a virus that we are out to inject to people. We have taken it and it is very safe,” Dr Akwale said.
He also said that they intend to vaccinate 1.1 million Kenyans during the first phase and the exercise is so far going on well.
Akwale further asked the public not to drop their guard owing to the fact that the country is now experiencing the third wave of the Covid-19 infections in the country.
He asked Kenyans to adhere to the Ministry of Health laid down preventive protocols in the fight against the virus.