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Govt allows UK residents to move without masks

Kenya remains on the list of countries whose citizens are banned from entering the United Kingdom (UK) over Covid-19 fears.

The UK recently updated countries on England’s ‘Red List’ amid concerns over the spread of the Covid-19 Delta variant.

Kenya was first placed on the travel ban list in April alongside Bangladesh, the Philippines, and Pakistan.

Announcing the move, the British High Commission in Nairobi said travelers who have been in or transited through Kenya in the past 10 days would be denied entry into the UK, with the only exception being British or Irish nationals as well third-country nationals with residence rights.

The UK ban has added weight to the decision of more than 50 countries to deny access to Kenyans in the global race to protect nations against new variants of coronavirus.

Besides the UK, Australia, Argentina, Belgium, Cambodia, Canada, Portugal, Denmark, Bulgaria, and Singapore top the list of countries that have banned or placed restrictions on holders of Kenyan passports.

Others are Hong Kong, Bangladesh, Chile, Czech Republic, Cyprus, and Cameroon, which Henley & Partners lists as the only African country to place restrictions on Kenya.

The Henley Passport Index made the revelations showing how the virus has hurt travel.

After the ban in April, Kenya retaliated by imposing similar restrictions on travelers originating from the UK, forcing the two countries to form a joint committee to address the restrictions.

The move to maintain the ban on Kenyans heading to the UK comes a day after the British government lifted all pandemic restrictions in England – including rules on mask-wearing and social distancing.

The lifting of the rules means nightclubs were also able to reopen for the first time since the UK first went into lockdown in March last year.