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Gov’t considered another lockdown - Minister Mpunga

Leave a comment / By: manifel / 05 January, 2021 10:28:56AM
Gov’t considered another lockdown - Minister Mpunga

In a quest for alternative solutions to control the surge in Covid-19 infections and deaths, the government gave another lockdown some consideration before shelving the plan, the Minister of State in Charge of Primary Healthcare at the Ministry of Health, Dr Col Tharcisse Mpunga has said.

The decision not to impose another lockdown has given Rwandans an opportunity to go on with the normalcy of their daily lives. 

The minister was speaking to the national broadcaster, Rwanda Broadcasting Agency (RBA) in the wake of the new cabinet resolutions announced on Monday night. 

Mpunga explained that the lockdown was considered after realising that half of the 105 people that have succumbed to the Covid-19 pandemic passed away in December. 

For instance, he said, the decision to halt all inter-district and movements to and from the City of Kigali were informed by the numbers that indicate that the pandemic has spread to almost all the provinces in the country.

“The festive season meant that many people were travelling all over the country and we must remember that this virus doesn’t move on its own. It’s carried by people. We, therefore, decided that temporarily suspending these movements would help slow down the spread,” he said.

On schools

Mpunga explained that the decision to suspend all the other gatherings and leave schools open was informed by the fact that as of today, the pandemic has not been recorded within the students in high numbers.

“Even in situations where students have tested positive, their condition has not been alarming. We decided to let them continue with their studies because it is easy to ensure that they continue adhering to the Standard Operation Procedures but also, their movements are limited,” he said.

Business closing time

He explained that although the curfew is at 8 pm, businesses were ordered to close at 6 pm in order to give operators the chance to arrive in their homes on time.

“What we are trying to do here is to ensure that members of the business community are able to use public transport easily without necessarily queuing so that they can minimise their risk of infection,” he said.

Covid-19 state in the country

The development came on the same day Rwanda reported four more fatalities, bringing the death tally to 105.

Among the deceased, three were men, including a 43-year old, 73-year old and an 82-year old. The other was a 68-year old lady. 

Rwanda also registered 172 new infections out of 2,251 samples that were taken in the same period. 

As it stands, Rwanda has a total of 1,927 active cases out of 8,848 cases reported since mid-March.

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