▶ Timeline of Uganda response to #COVID19 #CoronaVirus
✳ Jan 20 – Screening starts of all passengers arriving at Entebbe Airport
✳ Jan 30 – The WHO declares COVID-19 outbreak a public health emergency
✳ Jan 31 – Ministry of Health officials meet Chinese Amb Zheng Zhu Qiang
✳ Feb 1 – PM Rugunda chairs inter-ministerial meeting
✳ Feb 3 – President Museveni sets example, screened at Entebbe arrivals
✳ Feb 3 – 2nd meeting between MOH and Chinese Amb
✳ Feb 3 – Uganda’s Cabinet discusses virus outbreak
✳ Feb 5 – Minister of Health Aceng updates the public
✳ Feb 11 – MOH update Statement on preparedness
✳ Feb 19 – MOH issues detailed guidelines on how to prevent virus
✳ Feb 21 – Screening starts at Malaba and Busia border points
✳ Feb 26 – MOH Press brief, no suspected or confirmed case of #COVID19 in Uganda
✳ Feb 26 – Minister of Health Aceng briefs press
✳ March 2 – ICT Minister Nabakooba releases ministerial statement
✳ March 2 – MOH- all international conferences postponed
✳ March 8 – 22 Europeans coming for a conference sent back home after they refused to self quarantine
✳ March 11 – MOH restricts travel and puts quarantine on arrivals from 16 high risk countries including US & UK
✳ March 12 – Uganda restricts travel to countries hit by COVID 19
✳ March 13 – MOH releases guidelines to schools
✳ March 18 – President Museveni statement to the nation
✳ March 18 – Schools to be closed, Weddings, burials, church gatherings all suspended
✳ March 20 – Samples from 7 suspected cases Kampala and Kanungu Districts test negative
✳ March 21 – National multi-denominational Prayers held at State House
✳ March 21 – President Museveni 2nd address | Uganda closes borders to human traffic, stops flights
✳ March 21 – Uganda confirms first case of COVID 19
✳ March 22 – President Museveni to make 3rd COVID 19 national address
Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | President Yoweri Museveni will for a second straight day address the nation on measures to contain the COVID-19 pandemic.
He will speak to the nation at 4pm today, hours after the Ministry of Health confirmed Uganda’s first case of the coronavirus.
“In light of confirmation of a COVID-19 case in Uganda, I will today, at 4pm, address the country on what further steps to take so that we curb the possible spread of this disease,” Museveni said.
Earlier, The Ministry of Health confirmed the first case of Covid-19 in Uganda.
The case is a 36-year-old Ugandan, a resident of Kakungulu Zone, Kibuli in Kampala, who returned home Saturday morning (2.00am) aboard Ethiopian Airlines from Dubai. He traveled out of Ugandan on March 17 for business.
On his return, he presented with symptoms of high fever and poor appetite. His temperature was at 38 degrees centigrade, prompting the authorities to isolate him for further tests, which later proved positive, according to Health Minister Jane Ruth Aceng.
He is now isolated at Entebbe Grade B Hospital.
“The passenger manifest has been retrieved and all contacts are known as we are in possession of the passports of all the travelers that came on that plane,” said Minister Ruth Aceng.
The declaration came just moments after President Yoweri Museveni announced that Entebbe International Airpirt and all Ugandan Borders will be closed from midnight tomorrow to stop passengers coming into Uganda from any part of the world.
“Humans crossing into Uganda from the different border points are also prohibited going forward”, the president said, as part of the additional measure to contain the virus, which has paralyzed the globe.
Todate, there are 1827 travelers under both self and institutional quarantine in Uganda. A number of these are Ugandan nationals.
Chinese escape quarantine, arrested in Zombo
Elsewhere, Eight Chinese who had escaped from quarantine in Entebbe Friday, have been arrested in Goli Zombo, enroute to DRC.
The Chinese, and their Ugandan collaborators, are expected to be charged in Arua High Court on Monday, a day after Uganda halted accepting any more foreigners through its airport after abuse of the quarantine arrangement the ministry of health and organised.
This was hours before Uganda declared its first confirmed COVID-19 case, a Ugandan who flew back home today aboard Ethiopian Airlines.
Uganda Police Chief Political Commissar AIGP Asan Kasingye confirmed the arrests, saying on twitter that ” 8 Chinese who had escaped from quarantine have been arrested in Zombo, enroute to D.R Congo. They will be charged in our Courts of law. Good job Uganda Police.”
Later, President Yoweri Museveni announced that government has closed Uganda’s borders and banned international flights and water vessels into the country.
While addressing the nation, President Museveni said then that it’s by God’s mercy that Uganda had not yet confirmed a case of COVID 19 by Saturday morning.
According to the President, the only flights that will be allowed into the country are cargo planes and emergency plane like UN planes carrying aid. Domestic flights can also continue.
However, the crews on these planes will be expected to undergo institutional quarantine.
Cargo vehicles will also be allowed to enter the country. However only three people will be allowed to enter the country per vehicle.
The President said that the country decided to ban all travel due to reluctancy of travelers to adhere to the quarantine measures.
President Museveni also called upon all Local council leaders to confine people that might enter the country using porous borders.
FULL STATEMENT FROM MOH
CORONAVIRUS DISEASE (COVID-19) CASE CONFIRMED
Kampala, 21 March 2020:– The Ministry of Health would like to inform the general public that Uganda has confirmed her 1st case of Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19).
The confirmed case is a 36 year old Ugandan male who arrived from Dubai today, Saturday 21st March 2020 aboard Ethiopian Airlines at 2:00am. During the screening process at the airport, his temperature was 38.7. This prompted the health teams to isolate him at the airport for further follow up. Subsequent temperatures taken at intervals of 30 minutes and one hour remained the same. He was evacuated to Entebbe Grade B Hospital for further follow up where a nasal swab was taken for analysis.
The confirmed case presented with high fever and poor appetite. He is not coughing neither did he have flu. However, the persistent fever prompted the health workers to isolate him.
His nasal swab samples was sent to Uganda Virus Research Institute (UVRI) for analysis. Results from UVRI showed the sample is positive for COVID-19.
The confirmed case had travelled to Dubai on the 17th of March, 2020 (four days ago) for business purposes. At the time of his travel, he was in good health. He is a resident of Kibuli, Kagungulu zone, Kampala.
However, to date a total of 1,827 travelers including Ugandans and others travelling back home have been identified as coming from high-risk countries for purposes of follow up. About 827 are completing self-quarantine while about 1,000 are under quarantine.
The Ministry of Health reassures the general public that all measures were undertaken to identify this case at the airport and isolate him in a timely manner. The passenger manifest has been retrieved and all contacts are known as we are in position of the passports of all the travelers that came on that plane.
The public is hereby requested to remain calm and vigilant and to report any suspected cases, call our toll-free lines on 0800-203-033 and 0800-100-066 or the following officers – Mr. Atek Kagirita 0782 909 153, Dr. Allan Muruta- 0772 460 297.
Dr. Aceng Jane Ruth