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Stephen Karanja: Doctor who termed COVID-19 vaccine unnecessary succumbs to virus

A Catholic doctor who had earlier dismissed the COVID-19 vaccine and warned Kenyans against receiving the jab has succumbed to the virus.

According to news sources, Stephen Karanja who until his death served as the Kenya Catholic Doctors Association (KCDA) chairman died on Thursday, April 29.

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He succumbed to the respiratory illness days after being admitted to Mater Hospital.

Confirming his death, Catholic Health Commission Jacinta Mutegi said;

“He had been admitted with COVID-19, there is no official statement from the association as yet but I can confirm that he died on Thursday, April 29.”

In March 2021, the deceased dismissed the COVID-19 virus terming it unnecessary, arguing that the only ways to prevent the virus was by wearing masks, mass testing and observation of COVID-19 patients.

“We advise that a COVID-19 vaccine is unnecessary and should not be given. We appeal to all the people of Kenya to avoid taking it,” said Karanja.

He also stated that inhaling steam several times a day and taking a combination of drugs daily could help in containing the illness.

Following Karanja’s controversial remarks on the vaccine, the Kenyan Catholic bishops distanced themselves from the statement, urging Kenyans to take the jab.

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It should be noted that those doctors cannot and should not purport to speak in the name of the Catholic Church. We, the Catholic bishops in Kenya, avail our vast network of healthcare facilities to be utilised to ensure the vaccination is rolled out in an objective and well-coordinated manner,” said chairman Philip Anyolo.

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