President, Yoweri Museveni has urged Ugandans to take necessary precautions and protect themselves against the deadly COVID-19 alias corona virus. In a message posted on his twitter message on Saturday afternoon, urged all Ugandans to take personal precaution and wash hands as government continues to study the virus to better protect all Ugandans.
“Take personal precautions, and look out for your colleagues too. The government will take all measures to safeguard you as well. Meanwhile, we shall keep studying this Coronavirus,” Museveni tweeted. Adding that, “Coronavirus is real; it does not kill as much and fast like Ebola but spreads at a very terrific rate. It undermines economies because it is disruptive and inconvenient.”
He urges heads of different places of prayer and worship to work with the Health Ministry to ensure that faithfuls are not exposed to risk. Museveni’s call comes as the World Health Organization-WHO is calling upon all countries to do more to prevent the spread of the virus because no country is safe.
According to WHO figures, more than 2,800 people have died from the virus and 83,000 infections have been confirmed in 54 countries across the world including Nigeria and Egypt. Hand washing with water and soap is one of the recommended WHO measures to prevent spread of the disease.
However, hand washing isn’t being practiced in many public places. At places of worship such as Watoto Church, St Paul’s Cathedral Namirembe and St Luke in Ntinda there were no hand washing facilities. Hotels that had provided hand washing or disinfection stations at the peak of the Ebola outbreak like Kampala Serena and Hotel Africana also don’t have hand washing facilities.
Arcades downtown Kampala where many traders rely on merchandise from China like Gaza land and Galilaya also lack hand washing facilities. Dr. Bernard Opar, an infection control expert in the Health Ministry, says it is important for all public places to provide hand washing facilities.
“We have not yet received any Coronavirus case in the country but that doesn’t mean that we are safe. We need to remain vigilant and one way to do that is enforce public hand washing. We are encouraging all public places like churches and hotels to provide such facilities,” Dr. Opar said.