Uganda coronavirus: Museveni hails ‘scientific’ relaxation of restrictions

July 22: Museveni further relaxes restrictions

President Yoweri Museveni on Tuesday evening delivered his 19th address on the COVID-19 situation and related matters. He touched on a raft of issues – lifting and easing restrictions in part and maintaining them on other issues.

“Our health workers have spent 4 months in the hospitals [some] without going home, they risk their lives to look after / treat people. When we are begging you to be careful it is also that we protect these selfless people,” the president said.

A key part of the address that has social media buzzing is the president’s reference to how scientific the latest decisions are. The president underlined the importance of scientific work and said it was why scientists needed to be paid well.

“We shall not accept anything that threatens life. That is why I involve our scientists in everything I do. We are fortunate to have good scientists. If you attack our scientists, I can tell you to go to hell,” he said.

He also reported to have said scientists will be involved in processes leading to reopening of places of worship. For people reacting on social media, they want to know who exactly are the president’s scientists.

The key takeaways included:

  • Reopen of some arcades / shopping centers provided they fulfil the following: have temperature monitors, ensure social distancing, hand washing, no traders in the corridors, verandas & roadsides.
  • Salons to be allowed to operate [with immediate effect] on condition that they ensure all [customers] wear face masks and operators wear face shields.
  • Public service motorcycles a.k.a boda bodas to begin operations effective 27th July 2020. They must register passengers, wear masks plus helmets, ensure passengers wear mask and operations end at 6pm.
  • The international airport, schools, places of worship will remain closed.
  • The president also reduced night-time curfew by two hours – it will now start at 9:00pm to 5:30 am.

On the closure of airspace to passenger traffic, the president said the measure will be in place “until the situation abroad settles down because there is so much chaos in foreign countries. I know we are losing a lot of money, but life is better than wealth,” the president stressed.

  • Confirmed cases = 1,072
  • Active cases = 114
  • Recoveries = 958
  • Number of deaths = 0

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