President Yoweri Museveni has assured the country that the tough health measures which were introduced by the government more than a month ago to contain the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic will be eased systematically with effect from May 6, 2020.
The President made the assurance yesterday when he addressed the nation and extended the lockdown by an extra 21 days as the government prepares to put in place elaborate health systems and protocols that will be followed once the lockdown and curfew are lifted in three weeks time.
Museveni explained that the lockdown extension had been necessitated by the need for the government to study the dynamic nature of the coronavirus especially in people who are infected but don’t show symptoms and can continue to infect others by up-to 34 days. “ I appeal to Ugandans to accept this intervention during this period as the government works on modalities that will be instituted and followed once the lockdown is lifted because we can’t shut down the country forever,” the President said.
The President also clarified that during the lockdown work on farms should continue including the movement of tractors and provision of car stickers to veterinary doctors. He said that the ongoing food distribution by the government was for the urban vulnerable groups who were depending on daily income and whose income has been affected by the COVID-19 lockdown measures.
The President directed the national health taskforce in charge of the COVID-19 response to provide mosquito nets to market vendors who spend nights at their work stations in a bid to comply with the curfew Standard Operational Procedures (SOPs).
However, Museveni strongly warned the population who are taking the law in their hands by assaulting security officers that they were “playing with danger.” He said that much as the armed forces while enforcing the COVID-19 lockdown including the curfew are not allowed to beat civilians , they have a right to defend themselves once attacked .
He also warned the corrupt border law enforcement officers that once caught allowing into the country unscreened travelers , they will be charged with attempted murder . The President lauded the frontline health workers for exhibiting a high level of professionalism by caring after the sick while also protecting themselves from getting infected by the virus.
So far all the 54 reported COVID -19 cases have responded positively to treatment and there has not been any death reported as a result of the disease in the country.