KAMPALA – Government has announced that it will step up enforcement of presidential and Ministry of Health guidelines on controlling the spread of COVID-19 in Kampala Metropolitan Area following a rise in virus community infections and deaths.
Of the 11 COVID-19 deaths reported in the country, nine are in Kampala Metropolitan Area, something the Kampala minister Betty Amongi on Thursday, August 13, 2020 described as alarming.
“The trend as said by the Minister of Health is worrying if we don’t protect the base (Kampala). When most of you requested for easing of the lockdown, the President and the Minister of Health indicated that there was need to be careful if lockdown was eased. What are we seeing now? Since the easing of lockdown, we have had 50% increase in Kampala. We opened arcades, today, 2 of them in downtown have so far had positive cases,” she added.
According to the minister, many city dwellers are no longer wearing masks in public places and transport, observing social distancing and sanitizing.
“The noncompliance which we see daily is worrying. Even where people have masks, they are not wearing. Those in work places, they aren’t wearing them. Therefore, we will now scale up enforcement,” Amongi told journalists at a press conference.
Amongi added that government has distributed face masks in Kampala and therefore it will not entertain any excuses concerning failure to wear a mask.
She said the LDUs will also help enforce adherence to the 9pm curfew time amid rising robberies and night movements. “People had made fun about enforcement in respect to LDUs and others, but we must now work with the multi-sectoral committee and Ministry of Health to ensure that we undertake serious enforcement,” the minister added.
The minister’s remarks come after the Ministry of Health named Kampala as the country’s biggest coronavirus hotspot.
“Kampala has joined the hotspot districts and I want to encourage Ugandans that the direction in which this pandemic will go in this country will be determined by the population,” Health Minister Dr. Jane Ruth Aceng said in televised address to the country. “If we’re responsible, people we’ll keep it under control but if we’re careless then it may blow out of proportion and cause us to loose some good number of lives,” she added.
“In Kampala, 79 cases have been reported in the last 14 days. 23 community cases were reported in one week. In the following week, the confirmed cases more than doubled to 56. This trend implies that we shall be seeing the number of cases go up,” Dr Aceng said.