The Minister ICT and National Guidance Judith Nabakooba has said the country is entering a critical stage in its fight against Covid-19.
According to the minister, in the past few weeks, the country has registered more cases of the virus than previously seen, which calls for stringent measures to curb the spread.
“Government is concerned about the rising number of COVID-19 deaths… the total number of the dead is 13 and all these are within a space of less than one month,” she said in a Sunday briefing.
“Of even greater concern is that for most of the people dying, their source of infection is not known making it difficult for contact tracing.”
If the number of COVID-19 deaths continues at this rate, the minister said, the government will soon ask all districts and municipalities to identify designated burial places to handle the dead.
“I want to inform the country that we can still avoid this unfortunate state of affairs if we decide to obey the guidelines including seeking early medical assistance in case of any symptoms,” she added. “I want members of the public especially those in Kampala and Wakiso to understand the seriousness of what is happening.”
Between the week of 28th July to 3rd August, Kampala registered 23 cases of COVID-19. The following week of 4th August to 12th, this number had more than doubled to 56. Statistics for this week are yet to be tallied but on 14th this week, Uganda registered the highest number of single infections with a total of 49 cases.
The minister says the situation in Kampala is getting out of hand. “It is unfortunate to note that even the arcades that just reopened recently have started to register positive cases,” she said, adding: “We, therefore, call upon all residents and those doing business in Kampala and Wakiso to take these developments seriously.”
Apart from Kampala, the Ministry of Health has also noted a number of new high-risk areas with new transmissions. Districts such as Masaka, Buikwe, Namisindwa and Adjumani are now registering many new cases. Other high-risk places coming up include markets and landing sites.
In order to scale up the level of prevention, the government has called upon all district and regional task force committees to embrace more stakeholders in their activities. Security forces, including the police, she said, are going to be more vigilant towards enforcing the directives such as wearing of masks in public, social distancing and others.