By Nasser Kasozi Akandwanaho
The Ugandan President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni has on Tuesday announced several measures that eased the lockdown which he declared in March, to control the spread of coronavirus.
Museveni among other measures he extended the curfew to start at 9pm and end at 5:30am.
President Museveni allowed boda boda riders to start carrying passengers on July 27, provided the riders wear face masks and helmets as well as observing other SOPs that include having a registration book to record details of passengers and cleaning the seat with sanitizers every time and always.
Museveni stresses the fact that even passengers must at all times wear face masks and observe the Health guidelines in place to control the spread of Covid-19 disease.
Museveni said that boda boda operators will be required to keep a record of passengers they transport to enable health workers trace them in case a rider tested positive for COVID-19.
Museveni said that, the riders will not be allowed to operate beyond 6pm because they were being used by criminals.
On another note President Museveni also allowed salons to start operating with immediate effect but emphasized the strict adherence SOPs.
“We’re going to open the salons provided they provide face shields for their staff, check temperature of clients, observe social distancing, no air conditioning and partitioning of parts of the salon in the cities, plus hand washing,” Museveni said.
On the Arcades Museveni said that, out of 170 arcades that were inspected, only 110 were found to be compliant. He said Kampala city has about 230 shopping arcades.
The president said that the compliant arcades will be allowed to re-open with immediate effect but must keep observing the health guidelines and SOPs.
Museveni said that, the arcades must have temperatures guns, ensure that traders and shoppers practice social distancing, among other measures.
On opening the International Airport President Museveni said that Entebbe International Airport will remain closed until the COVID-19 situation in other countries improves.
“I know we are losing a lot of money in tourism, but health is better than wealth. Borders will also remain closed,” Museveni said.
President Museveni said that, on churches and other places of worship will remain closed until scientists find a suitable strategy to get them re-opened.
Museveni said that schools, bars, gyms will also remain closed as experts study the Covis-19 situation.
“With schools, a decision will be made before September because that’s when third term is supposed to start,” he said. “I do not want to declare a dead-year yet because a lot of scientists are working on the vaccine and it may come sooner than later. Let us give it a month and focus on distance learning.”
President Museveni said that because of the tough measures that were introduced, Uganda has registered small infection numbers with no deaths sofa.
Museveni said that people who don’t take COVID-19 seriously are not only endangering themselves but they are also endangering other groups like health workers.
“After four months of enemy [COVID-19] attack, only 1,072 people have been infected and 958 have been healed, with nobody dying.
Museveni noted that he has observed some people are not happy with Uganda’s successful story on fighting Covid-19 pandemic.
“It seems some people are not happy with this and are asking why Ugandans are not dying,” Museveni said.