East African Community member states are considering the possibility of testing truck drivers before they embark on their journeys.
This was disclosed by President Yoweri Museveni while speaking at the second national prayers hosted at Statehouse Entebbe.
He said that the East African Community Leaders of Kenya, Tanzania, South Sudan and Rwanda and Uganda are in talks to have a common position for drivers to be tested where they are coming from. The statement comes a day after Uganda announced 13 new COVID-19 infections, recorded among truck drivers.
This is the highest number of infections to be recorded by the country in one day, since the confirmation of the virus in March. Uganda’s caseload now stands at 114 infections, a sizeable number from Kenyan and Tanzanian truck drivers who are entering the country through Malaba, Busia and Mutukula border posts.
Museveni said that instead of testing at the border, the joint teams of the four countries and their health teams will test the truck drivers who have become a problem.
According to the president, Uganda will insist that only tested drivers should be allowed to access the country. But he reiterated that the region cannot do away with truck drivers because they carry valuable merchandise. The President, however, adds that the COVID-19 situation is a wakeup call to the country and its leadership.
Museveni reminded Ugandans on the need to wear facemasks, to ensure that the virus does not spread. He says if public transport is opened masks are a very important element in avoiding the virus, adding that ‘opening up without the masks is very dangerous.’
On the rising water levels on the
lake, the President said that the affected people had tampered with nature by
encroaching on the territories of the lake as created by God. He says that unlike
1964 when the water levels went high and damaged the dam and other
infrastructure, this time the water levels will damage those who encroach on
the buffer zones.