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Uganda lockdown: strict on saving lives and economy

Friday, 25th June 2021
President addressing Ugandans on latest COVID lockdown

Uganda is in its second week of another country-wide lock-down aimed at fighting the mutating COVID virus which has entered her territory. Addressing the nation, President Museveni announced wide-ranging measures in this battle which include the closing down of schools and all institutions of learning and worship; with effect from 18thJune. Also closed were all places of entertainment including bars, betting, cinema and disco halls. A week after these basic closures, the President instituted a ban on all inter-district travel throughout the country; scrapping even travel by the popular method of bodabodas. The only inter-district and intra-district vehicle traffic allowed is that of tourists, security and emergency vehicles.

The Ugandan ban is mindful of the economy with the sectors of agriculture, industry, manufacturing and tourism left free to operate albeit with strict observance of the standard operating procedures as advised by the Ministry of Health. Also operating are the health and medical services; as well as the utilities sector. The latter include operations of water, electricity, banks, mass media, telecommunications, and waste management services.

The matter of connectivity is crucial to Uganda, a country without a coast: therefore it is reassuring to see that the ban does not affect her borders. Entry into the country through Entebbe International airport is open though all travelers will be expected to follow travel protocols and procedures to ensure that no new arrivals bring in existing and much less, any new mutations of the virus. Long-distance truckdrivers will be subjected to COVID tests at all entry points , with amenities at hand for any COVID-related eventualities.

Perhaps the saddest dimension of the COVID virus, is that it does not allow for due homage to be paid to those it has killed. In Uganda, only family members are allowed to bury the dead.