President Yoweri Museveni on Friday evening announced fresh guidelines to follow allowing public transport to reopen at half capacity as one of the measures aimed at stopping the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in Uganda.
On June 18, 2021, Museveni imposed a 42-day lockdown barring inter-district movements, public transport, public gatherings, and institutions (including places of worship and schools) for a period of six weeks.
Museveni in a televised address said all commuter taxis, buses, passenger trains and motorcycles commonly known as boda bodas are allowed to resume operations, carrying passengers at half capacity (50%), under strict observance of the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs)
The private vehicles are allowed to move across the district borders provided they do not carry more than three people including the driver. This means, the inter district travel ban has been lifted in the new guidelines announced.
Below is a full list of new revised directives;
1. Curfew time maintained at 7:00pm till 5:30am. All persons except security personnel and those authorised to move should be in their homes.
2. Bodabodas are now allowed till 18:00hrs to now carry one person only. Strictly maintain SOP’s.
3. All kiosks in kikuubo should be removed for purposes of space creating.
4. Kikuubo to remain a whole sale trading centre.
5. Traders should adapt to e-commerce.
6. Malls can open with presence of compliance officers; clear pathways, registration of shop owners and attenders is a must. Failure to conform leads to closure.
7. 20 people for burial to be maintained.
8. Weddings still limited to 20 people.
9. Places of worship still not allowed but will be reviewed after 60 days.
10. Sports are now allowed with strict adherence to sops. Outdoor exercise allowed. Indoor sports activities including gym, pool tables remain closed.
11. Gaming and betting to remain closed, as well casinos.
12. Bars remain closed and non compliant people will be charged.
13. Saloons to remain open under strict observance of sops and guidelines.
14. Sauna’s and steam baths to remain closed.
15. Schools will remain closed until sufficient vaccination of kids to take place. Medical schools will commence after review.
16. Learning to remain virtually.
17. Reduction of core staff to 20% in MDA and other formal sectors.
18. Private vehicles are now allowed to move to districts.
19.Movement in and out of the country through the airports to remain open.
20. Cargo trucks are allowed to move in and out of the country with Testing results.
21. Taxis are allowed but with 50% capacity. This is to be reviewed after two weeks.
22. There must be no air conditioning in all public transport.
23. Food markets should remain open.
24. Conferences, workshops and seminars remain banned except with express permission from MoH, MDAs etc.
25. Ministry of finance to mobilise low cost credit to SMEs and microfinance institutions. MoF will prepare and announce details of this guidelines in the next two weeks.
26. In conclusion countrymen and country women, the virus is changing and maybe as infectious as the common cold, chicken pox (Amatojo). Nevertheless Uganda is not as bad as some of the countries. We are now partially opening up. If these measures are taken, we can avoid the third wave and perhaps even go to fully open up!