By  Our Foreign  Correspondents  

At least 276 Ugandans stranded in USA since the outbreak of the novel global Covid 19 pandemic more than four months ago are on their way home after being seen off  at Dulles International Airport, Washington, DC, aboard Ethiopian Airlines.

The group was seen off by the Ambassador of Uganda to the USA, South America and the Caribbean, Mr. Mull Sebujja Katende who was flanked by Deputy Chief of Mission, Amb. Santa Mary Laker-Kinyera and Permanent Representative of Uganda to the United Nations, Amb. Adonia Ayebare.

A second group of 88 passengers will depart from Canada, South America and the Caribbean tomorrow 18th July 2020 transiting in Addis Ababa and arrive in Entebbe on 19th July 2020 officials at the Ministry of  Foreign Affairs told ugandaupdatenews.com  .

The travellers from the US and Caribbean included Ugandans and legal residents and their dependents, affected by the March 23rd closure of Entebbe Airport to stem the deadly Coronavirus that millions dead . 

The majority of passengers are holders of US visitors visas, F1 and J1 student and research fellow visas and Ugandan resident permit holders who were unable to travel back to Uganda when the airport was closed. The Uganda Embassies in North America also registered a number of stranded Ugandans who had traveled for medical reasons.

Amb. Katende explained that the registration and repatriation process, though complex, due to the size of the area of accreditation, had been made possible by the seamless coordination and teamwork of the staff at the three Embassies of Uganda in Washington, DC, New York and Ottawa. He paid tribute to his colleagues Amb. Adonia Ayebare (PR New York) and  Amb. Jane Ruth Acheng (Ottawa), the management of Ethiopian Airlines and Mr. Mukesh Sahu of Satguru Travel Solutions for their tireless efforts to reach out and provide guidance to the stranded Ugandans.

He thanked the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Health for putting in place clear guidelines and standard operating procedures to ensure that Ugandans stranded abroad return home safely. The returns will be quarantined for 14 days as expected .

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