Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | President Museveni has defended health minister Jane Ruth Aceng saying that the country wrongly crucified her when she got involved in a crowded procession in Lira a few weeks ago.
Aceng came under criticism early this month when she appeared to be holding a political rally without a face mask, in total violation of the COVID-19 physical distancing guidelines which she has championed since the outbreak of coronavirus disease. Ugandan political leaders called for her resignation over the incident.
In the aftermath, Dr Aceng said that she was in Lira district to launch the distribution of government face masks in Aromo Sub County and to train people on how to use the masks. But, according to her, the crowd got excited when they heard about facemasks, and specifically the Minister for Health whom they call ‘mama Corona.’
She added that it was difficult to control the crowd which had not been expected. Similarly, President Museveni says that although Aceng didn’t invite her voters to hold the procession, her lack of experience in controlling politically charged supporters threw her under the bus.
According to Museveni, Aceng’s astonishing performance in the handling of COVID-19 pandemic attracted more love from the people of Lango who insisted that she stands as their area MP. He adds that Aceng, who has all her life been a technocrat is only joining the political bandwagon out of demands from her people, who have put their requests in writing, to the president.
He added that although he had advised her to abandon politics and stick to her medical expertise at the Ministry of Health headquarters, the people of Lango insisted that they need her services as a Member of parliament. He noted that he is yet to establish whether there was a hidden motive behind the distribution of masks, but he is sure Aceng didn’t intend to violate the COVID-19 regulations.