Minister Kasolo on spot over defying Covid-19 guidelines

Saturday December 05 2020
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This photo shows NRM supporters gathered at a mass rally organised by State Minister for Microfinance Mr Haruna Kasolo- during the 'official launch' of NRM candidates' joint campaigns in Kalisizo Town, Kyotera district, Dec. 03, 2020. PHOTO/AMBROSE MUSASIZI.

By Ambrose Musasizi

State Minister for Microfinance, Mr Haruna Kyeyune Kasolo is on the spot over flouting Covid-19 guidelines.

Mr Kasolo, who is seeking re-election as Kyotera County legislator in Kyotera District on Thursday held a massive rally at Kalisizo playground- attracting a mammoth crowd, which is against guidelines set by the Electoral Commission[EC] in line with measures aimed at curbing the spread of the deadly virus.

The rally was graced by popular artists like Ronald Mayinja and Haruna Mubiru with participants not observing social distancing and many noticeably had no face masks, which could expose them to the contagion.

Surprisingly, there was no single police officer at the rally to enforce the Covid-19 guidelines.

Dr Edward Muwanga, the District Health Officer, said actions of some politicians during the current electioneering is slowing down their efforts to fight the raising community infections.

“Our role is to sensitise people so that they know what to do, but it’s the role of the Police to make sure the guidelines set by the Health Ministry and Electoral Commission are fully enforced. It is them to blame ” he said.

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Mr John Paul Mpalanyi, a Democratic Party flag bearer for Kyotera County, wondered why police are playing double standards while enforcing Covid-19 guidelines.

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Minister Mr Haruna Kasolo (second left) dancing to the songs of musician Ronald Mayinja(middle ) during the official launch of NRM candidates joint campaigns in Kalisizo Town, Kyotera District on December 3, 2020 PHOTO BY AMBROSE MUSASIZI.

“They [Police]   always dispersed my campaign meetings under the pretext of enforcing Covid-19 guidelines even when a few people are in attendance. But my opponent campaigns the way he wants and is not interrupted, why is police playing double standards,” he said adding “ We are all equal before the law whether one is a minister or a commoner  .” he added

Ms Judith Akello, the Kyotera District Police Commander declined to speak about the matter, saying she is not authorised to speak on behalf of police.

“Please, I can’t speak about that because it is the role of our spokesperson to talk to the media,” She said by telephone before hanging up.

Efforts to speak to Mr Muhammad Nsubuga, the southern regional spokesperson was futile as his telephone was off for the better part of Friday.

Mr Kasolo did not respond to repeated calls from this newspaper.

Kyotera is among the first districts to have recorded Covid-19 cases and in a space of one week two people have recently succumbed to the virus.

One of the deceased was the chairperson of Kalisizo Hospital management committee, Mr John Ssansa Mutagejja.

In the neighbouring Rakai District , a Medical Superintendent at Rakai General hospital Dr Yasin Kiyemba also died from Covid-19 last month after spending close to a month at Mulago National Referral Hospital in Kampala.  

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