President Yoweri Museveni will today Sunday March 22 address the nation on reducing the spread of Coronavirus, a recently declared global pandemic which has claimed over 13,000 lives.
Uganda had not identified any case of Coronavirus Disease (Covid-19) since December last year when it was first confirmed in China, until yesterday Saturday, when the Ministry of Health, informed the public that the country had confirmed her 1st case.
The confirmed case is a 36 year old Ugandan male who arrived from Dubai on Saturday 21st March 2020 aboard Ethiopian Airlines at 2:00am.
The Ministry said that during the screening process at the airport, his temperature was 38.7 which prompted the health teams
to isolate him at the airport for further follow up.
“Subsequent temperatures taken at intervals of 30 minutes and one hour remained the same. He was evacuated to Entebbe Grade B Hospital for further follow up where a nasal swab was taken for analysis,” noted the Ministry of Health
“His nasal swab samples was sent to Uganda Virus Research Institute (UVRI) for
analysis. Results from UVRI showed the sample is positive for COVID-19,” added the Ministry.
Using his social media platforms, the President on Sunday morning wrote that he will later in the day brief the nation on how to stop the spread of the disease now that it is in the country.
“In light of confirmation of a COVID-19 case in Uganda, I will today, at 4pm, address the country on what further steps to take so that we curb the possible spread of this disease. Thank you,” the President posted on Facebook.
This will the be third time in less than a week when the President is addressing the nation on this pandemic, the first being Wednesday last week when he banned all public gatherings including suspending school going, entertainments events, church services and weddings with more than 10 people, for a period of one month to reduce the risk of transmitting the Coronavirus.
The President, again addressed the country on Saturday from Statehouse Entebbe where he announced that Uganda will by tomorrow Monday March 23, block all passenger flights into Uganda as well as entry of people into the country by road and water, as part of measures to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.
“We have decided to prohibit all incoming passengers whether by air land or water. In order to actualise this, we have decided to prohibit all passenger planes from outside Uganda from landing at any of the airports of Uganda,” Museveni said.
Exception has been given to cargo planes flying in and outside of Uganda. The other planes which have been exempted from the ban are UN planes which are involved in emergency and relief work and other UN operations.
“The crews of these cargo or UN mission planes will be accommodated in locations agreed on with concerned authorities,” he said.
Latest global figures indicate that there are currently 308,473 confirmed coronavirus cases and that 13,069 people have succumbed to the disease. 95,828 have individuals recovered from it.
In East and Central Africa, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has the highest number of confirmed cases which stands at 23, followed by Rwanda at 17, Ethiopia 9, Kenya 7 and Tanzania 6.