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Coronavirus – Uganda: Museveni extends lockdown as the country nears 100 COVID-19 patients

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President Museveni on Monday announced a restricted opening up of Uganda’s economy which was placed under a lockdown in order to fight the spread of coronavirus, 43 days ago.

Addressing the nation from the state house, Museveni praised his country for “successfully” limiting the spread of the disease.

The partial opening up will see some sectors of the economy continue to operate while others have also been given a green light to start operations with Standard Operating Procedures (SoPs).

Some of the SoPs include observing social distancing guidelines and wearing of facemasks while in public.

He said insurance practitioners will be allowed to operate and only 30 lawyers under the Uganda Law Society, will be added onto the list of essential service providers.

However, according to Mr Museveni, restaurants will only be allowed to offer takeaway services.

Ugandans have already endured a 45 lockdown and many were anticipating the lifting of the lockdown. However, Museveni who praised Ugandans for flattening the curve to 10° above horizontal and saving the country “images of hundreds of coffins as seen in other countries”, said it is not yet safe to reopen public and private transport.

“We have not yet thought it wise to allow public or private transport. People should use buses, either owned or hired by the employers, cycling to the workplace which is the healthiest and also walking to the factory and walking back,” Museveni said.

Museveni added that during the next 14-days, all the 35 measures previously announced between March 18 and 30 will remain in place.  He said these will be reviewed towards the end of the 14 days. 

However, 8 new coronavirus cases were confirmed inUganda – rising the national tally to 97.

in a Tweet, the Ministry of Health said: “Today, May 4, 2020, eight new COVID-19 cases confirmed. Six out of 2,061 samples of truck drivers while two cases are from the community confirmed from the Rapid Assessment Survey.”

According to the ministry, five truck drivers arrived from Kenya through Malaba border post while another arrived from Tanzania via Mutukula border point.

The two other patients, the ministry said, were “a resident of Kyotera district while the other is a Ugandan truck driver from Mutukula”.

Uganda has tested 3,845 people so far and only 89 have been found positive, at least 33 of whom are foreigners. 55 others have recovered from the disease.

The foreigners include 12 Tanzanians, 14 Kenyans, 3 Burundians, 1 Canadian, 1 Indian and 2 Chinese.

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