Public transport to open in June when all Ugandans have face-masks, says Museveni

Monday May 18 2020
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A file photo showing taxi tout and conductor calling for passengers in Kampala. President Museveni said public transport will be allowed to operate starting June 2 when all Ugandans have facemasks

All Ugandans aged six and above will be given free facemasks in a bid to protect themselves against the spread of coronavirus, President Museveni has said.

“This mask must be worn all the time when you are in public. Whether you are sneezing, talking or coughing. Since many people raised the issue that they cannot afford these masks, the gov’t has decided to provide these masks to all Ugandans 6 years and above,” Mr Museveni said in a televised address to update Ugandans on government efforts against the spread of the virus which has left 260 people in the country infected.

According to the president, children less than age six cannot safely wear the facemasks which will be distributed through the Local Council (LC) system.
“These masks, like mosquito nets, will be distributed through the LC system. One mask per person of age 6 and above will be given. It must be worn all the time when you are in public,” he said.
Once issues of the masks is addressed, shops selling general merchandise will open if they are not in shopping arcades, food markets or arcades, he said.

Public transport
Mr Museveni further said public and private transport will resume around June 2, 2020 after all Ugandans have been given facemasks.
"The masks will take two weeks to be ready. Two weeks will be ... like June 2. However, this opening of public transport will not be allowed in the border districts of Uganda for another 21 days. And when the taxis resume, I don't want to hear of brokers and these noisemakers in the park. Since it is impossible to space out the passenger and the boda boda rider, boda bodas and tuk tuks will not be allowed to carry passengers," he said.

Bars, salons, gyms and swimming pools will remain closed for the next 21 days.
"For the bars and salons, since they cannot observe the rules of social distancing, they will not be allowed to open for another 21 days, this includes, gyms and swimming pools," Mr Museveni said.

Private cars
People with private cars will be allowed to drive as long as the car doesn’t carry more than three people.
"Three people includes the driver. This will require you to wear a proper mask," Mr Museveni said.
Curfew extended for another 21 days
The president also said curfew will remain unchanged for another 21 days.
“The measures to ease lockdown as addressed today (Monday) will be activated only when each individual has received a standard mask distributed by the government of Uganda,” Mr Museveni added.