KAMPALA – The government has announced a total ban on new asylum seekers entering the country, for 30 days.
Eng. Hilary Onek, the Minister for Relief, Disaster Preparedness, and Refugees, in a directive that takes immediate effect said no new asylum seeker arrivals will be received within the country in a period of 30 days.
“With immediate effect, no new asylum seeker arrivals will be received within the country in a period of 30 days,” he said adding that “all Transit and reception centres including DOR/ Kampala and Old Kampala Police Desk Refugee Office shall be closed to new asylum seeker arrivals for a period of 30 days. Security is hereby enjoined to ensure strict compliance with this guidance.”
Onek also issued guidelines that must be followed by asylum seekers already at the reception and transit centres in refugee settlements.
His guidelines were later followed by a presidential directive halting all movements in and out of the country.
“No person Ugandan or otherwise will be allowed to enter Uganda by land, water – except drivers of cargo vehicles. No buses minibusses, salon cars, boda boda, pedestrians on foot, people on bicycles. Nor will they be allowed to exit by these means.”
The presidential directive also stopped all refugees from arriving.
President Museveni said humans crossing into Uganda from the different border points are prohibited going forward.
“This is until we find coordination at the East African level. Please stay where you are. We are not against anyone but this is about manageability.”
Health minister Dr. Ruth Jane Aceng confirmed the first coronavirus infection in Uganda on Saturday night.
To date, Dr. Aceng said a total of 1,827 travelers including Ugandans and others travelling back home have been identified as coming from high-risk countries for purposes of follow up and are under quarantine.
About 827 are completing self-quarantine while about 1,000 are under mandatory quarantine.