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Amuru leaders demand mandatory COVID-19 tests

Leaders in Amuru are calling for COVID-19 community mass testing.

Amuru, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Amuru district leaders have asked the government to consider mandatory COVID-19 testing of all area residents following an increase in community infections among residents of Elegu township in Atiak sub county.

The cases are expected to have been people who made contacts with truck drivers that were intercepted from Amuru after crossing into Uganda from South Sudan. According to Atiak sub county chairperson Wilfred Odiya Baguma, the area has been highly infiltrated by people from mainly South Sudan which currently has nearly 1,900 cases of coronavirus disease.

Amuru District Health Officer Patrick Odong Olwedo told URN that samples of 34 people who voluntarily tested for COVID-19 this month alone turned out positive pointing to the possible existence of more cases from within the community. He says that the government needs to take immediate action in the high risks areas of Attiak and Elegu.

Amuru district chairperson Michael Lakony appealed to the government to speed up the process of placing a mobile laboratory for testing for COVID-19 at Elegu town to ease mass testing of community members.

Kilak North Member of Parliament Anthony Akol explained that while the district is focused on fighting transmission from truck drivers, some members of the community are infected and continue to spread the disease because many have abandoned the Ministry of Health guidelines which would help to keep the virus at bay.

However, the State Minister for Primary Health Care Joyce Moriku Kaducu argued that the government cannot carry out mandatory mass testing due to a shortage of testing kits and machines in the country.

She instead appealed to the leaders to sensitize the community to adhere to standard operating procedures and guidelines set by the government to curtail spread of the virus.



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