The Council of Governors has postponed, for the second time, the 7th and final Annual Devolution Conference, which was scheduled to take place in Makueni County between August 23 to 26, 2021.
In a statement the CoG said the postponement was prompted by the recent statement by President Uhuru Kenyatta issuing a ban on all public gatherings and in-person meetings.
“This is premised on the Presidential directive issued on August 18, 2021, vide Public Order No. 5 of 2021 on Coronavirus Pandemic suspending all public gatherings and in-person meetings,” the statement reads signed by chairman Martin Wambora.
The council, however, said the new conference dates will be communicated in due time.
The conference had earlier been scheduled for May 3 to 7 and expected to attract at least 5,000 delegates, including the President and the Deputy President.
As part of measures to ensure safety during the conference, the Council’s Vice Chairperson James Ongwae and Devolution CS Eugene Wamalwa, in an earlier joint statement, said that the Ministry of Health was working towards ensuring strict adherence to the COVID-19 containment protocols, and only the vaccinated delegates were to join the physical meeting
Initially, Makueni County lawmakers had asked the government to consider postponing the devolution conference given the rising cases of Covid-19 infections adding that there could be a likelihood of more residents of the devolved unit getting infected.
“When the fourth wave is at its peak we cannot have a conference here to kill our people. People who have been vaccinated are the worst carriers of Covid-19 and they can easily pass it to us,” the MCAs said.
Makueni County is among the countries that President Kenyatta noted to have shown an increase in Covid-19 infections due to a breach of Ministry of Health guidelines.
“In particular, 18 counties have recorded a positivity rate above 20 per cent, and over the last week, the following counties have recorded a positivity rate of above 30 per cent: Kiambu, Nyandarua, Murang’a, Makueni, Machakos, Baringo, Meru, and Nyeri,” read the statement.
The President suspended with immediate effect all physical public gatherings including political rallies and campaign meetings for a further 60 days.