Covid-19 related deaths have surged sharply in Uganda forcing President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni to announce total lockdown.
Museveni has been forced to announce tougher restrictions after the country recorded 42 Covid-related deaths and 1,000 new infections.
Museveni vowed to ‘stop the joke’ of the public violating the public health guidelines, known locally as the Standard Operating Procedures [SOP].
In the new set of tougher rules, he stopped the movement of public and private transport vehicles. Only security, emergency, and other essential service providers, including the police, firefighters, and the military have been exempted.
The reason we r having 42 after 42 lockdown in Uganda 😂😂 pic.twitter.com/QwCSd6Z680
— Nelly Payn (@nellypayn) June 18, 2021
The new move tightened restrictions imposed a week ago when cross-district travel was banned, schools closed and other public gatherings restricted yet the deaths continued to rise.
“When I hear these people who have died…I am getting telephone calls from all over the place…they are telling me so and so is dying…and yet we told you from March last year, this joke must stop,” President Museveni said in his address to the nation on Friday.
The country had been operating under a tight set of restrictions, including a curfew that starts at 9 pm to 5 am, compulsory wearing of masks, and social distance in public places.
The Ugandan leader lampooned schools and other learning institutions which he accused of sitting on evidence of possible infections in schools. He had said the same thing last week when he ordered schools closed. They will remain shut for the next 42 days.
“It is observed that some sections of the public are not adhering to the curfew hours. As such, curfew throughout the country is pulled back to 7 pm to 5.30 am,” he said.
The rise in cases in Uganda comes as Kenya also struggles to control the sharp rise in the cases from the Western part of the country.
The government has been forced to announce curfew in the affected counties and other tough rules to avoid the spillover of cases to other counties.