President Yoweri Museveni has maintained the night-time curfew across the country arguing that it is not only to curb crime but also a means to stop the spread of the coronavirus. The curfew runs from 7 p.m. to 6 30 a.m. every day.
Speaking to the country from the State Lodge in Nakasero, on Monday evening, Museveni said that according to his scientists, the night-time curfew ensures that people keep in their homes hence limiting the spread of the coronavirus. He said that if there is no night-time curfew, people will be going to visit friends in the evening and ending up turning homes into bars.
“Uganda is in phase three of the COVID-19 pandemic. Activities that promote convergence can lead to more clustered cases. The curfew acts as the measure that restricts activities of converging. Going home early and staying there is aimed at preventing the spread. Curfew is a health instrument; go home and remain home.”
Museveni also reiterated the first aim of the curfew of wadding off crime. “In this time when people are having economic problems without curfew some will be tempted to commit crime,” Museveni said.
The other restrictions that the president maintained include the ban on religious congregations, bodaboda’s carrying only cargo, not passengers, a ban on saloons, sellers of non-food items in markets, arcades, mobile markets and schools.
He said the risk of spreading the virus is very high especially now that the country has moved into the most deadly phase of community spreading. To mitigate the economic impact of the continued lockdown, Museveni said, business owners should register with the respective government ministries so that the government helps them to access cheap loans or assistance to start other businesses.
“The issue is not jobs or money, but the biggest issue now is life or death; you must eliminate the potential for death caused by the carelessness of this disease,” Museveni said.
Meanwhile, Museveni loosened up on some restrictions by allowing private cars to carry four people provided they wear face masks and have the air conditioner turned off. Previously, only three people including the driver were allowed in a private car.
The president also allowed the repatriation of bodies of Ugandans provided they follow the guidelines issued by the Ministry of Health and counterparts in Foreign Affairs. He also allowed both private and public vehicles to resume operation in border districts save for Amuru, Rakai, Kyotera, Buikwe, Gulu, Arua, Adjumani, Moyo and Nebbi which have registered the highest cases of coronavirus.
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