Rwanda tightens restriction measures, including school closure, as Uganda approves Covidex

RWANDA – Rwanda has announced a review of COVID-19 restriction measures due to a surge in cases and the emergence of new variants globally.

Schools and higher education institutions in the country will be closed. Provisions for students sitting national exams in July 2021 will be communicated by the ministry of education.

Movements in some parts of the country has also prohibited between 6 pm-4 am and businesses conditioned to close by 5 pm.

Social gatherings including gatherings held in homes and family visits are prohibited. All meetings have

The office of the Prime Minister also announced that offices, both private and public are closed. Staff shall work from home except for those providing essential services.

Vendors/traders in markets and trading centers shall operate at 50% capacity, selling only food and essential items.

Places of worship, bars remain closed, while restaurants shall offer only take-away service. Traditional, civil and religious weddings remain suspended.

Arriving and departing passengers at Kigali International Airport must present a negative COVID-19 PCR test taken within 72 hours before departure.

Uganda approves Covidex

In bid to contain the virus, Uganda’s National Drug Authority (NDA) has approved Covidex as a supportive treatment for viral infections including COVID-19 but not as a cure.

In a statement, NDA stated that after a record time of 14 days of engagements with the innovators and assessments of the product information, Covidex, has been notified to be sold in licensed drug outlets for supportive treatment in managing viral infections but not as a cure of COVID-19.

Covidex has been formulated from herbal plants that have been traditionally used to alleviate symptoms of several diseases.

To further support the efficacy of the drug for other uses, NDA has advised the manufacturer to conduct random controlled clinical trials which are the highest level of evidence to ascertain any claims of treatment.

This comes at a time when the Zimbabwean government has set July 14 as the deadline for frontline health workers to get vaccinated against COVID-19.

“After this date, those who would not have been vaccinated will not receive COVID-19 insurance payouts,” said Information Minister Monica Mutsvangwa.

Vaccinated frontline workers who test positive will, however, still be eligible for the payout.

At a post-cabinet press briefing, the minister said that the vaccination rate among health care workers remains low despite being prioritized for vaccination ahead of other citizens.

She said that 20 percent of frontline workers have yet to present themselves for vaccination, which will pose risks to both other workers and patients.

Zimbabwe has witnessed a resurgence in COVID-19 cases and deaths over the past weeks, prompting the government to re-impose tighter lockdown measures.

As of Tuesday, Zimbabwe had recorded 48,533 COVID-19 cases with 38,323 recoveries and 1,761 deaths.

A total of 770,709 people have so far received their first COVID-19 vaccine dose and 544,888 their second.

Mnangagwa said the government will roll out a vaccination blitz in high-risk areas as it steps up efforts to contain a possible third wave of the pandemic.

Africa continues to take all necessary measures to battle the covid-19 pandemic.

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