"Without the vaccination of hospitality workers, Africa will be isolated," says CS Balala

So far, 1.6 million Kenyans have been vaccinated against COVID-19 including 581,003 who have received their second jab.

Tourism Cabinet Secretary Najib Balala

African countries need to get equal access to Covid-19 vaccines so they can start rebuilding their devastated tourism industries, Kenya's tourism Cabinet Secretary has said.

About 21 million jobs have been lost in the sector across the continent since the start of the pandemic, Najib Balala said on the sidelines of a meeting of his African counterparts, called to discuss the crisis.

"Without the vaccination of hospitality workers, Africa will be isolated," he said.

Africa has essentially had to pause its rollout of Covid-19 vaccines because of supply problems - and only 18 million people are fully vaccinated in a continent of 1.3 billion, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Thursday July 15, 2020.

WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has repeatedly decried what he calls the scandalous difference in vaccine supplies between richer and poorer nations.

Balala said some rich nations had been hoarding shots, stockpiling enough doses for up to four times their populations, at the expense of African nations.

"We are just demanding fairness, so we can revive our economies," he said.

The collapse of the tourism sector has deprived many African countries of one of their main sources of hard currency.

Kenya, which welcomed 2 million visitors in 2019, only got 300,000 visitors in the first half of this year, the tourism ministry said on Thursday.

Britain's decision to put Kenya on its red list of countries also had a particularly significant impact, Balala said.

He called for a single, global protocol for travel to apply to all nations, to prevent rich nations from starving their African counterparts of travel and business opportunities.

JOIN OUR PULSE COMMUNITY!

Unblock notifications in browser settings.

Eyewitness? Submit your stories now via social or:

Email: news@pulselive.co.ke

Recommended articles

CS Munya announces measures to bring down cost of maize flour

CS Munya announces measures to bring down cost of maize flour

Moses Kuria sounds alarm on incitement by Kameme FM presenters

Moses Kuria sounds alarm on incitement by Kameme FM presenters

President Kenyatta pays a visit to Vasco da Gama's tomb

President Kenyatta pays a visit to Vasco da Gama's tomb

Former street boy rejects Rigathi Gachagua's job offer

Former street boy rejects Rigathi Gachagua's job offer

Uhuru and Matiang'i are to blame for insecurity - Gachagua

Uhuru and Matiang'i are to blame for insecurity - Gachagua

David Ndii told his wife bribery is grounds for divorce

David Ndii told his wife bribery is grounds for divorce

Murkomen reacts to mock election held by KTN journalist in Nakuru

Murkomen reacts to mock election held by KTN journalist in Nakuru

Nakuru East MP grilled by DCI

Nakuru East MP grilled by DCI

DCI starts using cartoons to narrate most captivating crime stories

DCI starts using cartoons to narrate most captivating crime stories