There are fears that that President Yoweri Kaguta Tibuhaburwa Museveni’s government could soon declare a lockdown over the Ugandan capital Kampala after cases of the Ebola Virus Disease rose to 15 in the past few days, raising fears that the viral haemorrhagic disease could spread further given how congested the country’s main administrative and commercial city is.
As of October 24, Kampala had about 15 confirmed cases of Ebola with nearly 50 still being monitored at the Mulago National Referral Hospital isolation unit. As of the same date, Uganda had lost 28 people to the Ebola Virus Disease which broke out in the district of Mubende last month. But the number of fatalities is said to be higher since it is reported that Ebola could have hit Mubende as early as August 2022 but cases were considered to be due to a strange disease or witchcraft.
A total of 28 people were listed as active cases on admission; the cumulative number of confirmed cases stood at 90; the cumulative number of recoveries was 34 while up to 1,830 people were listed for follow-up after they made contact with people who had either died of Ebola or those who have been confirmed to have the virus in their bodies but are still receiving treatment in hospital.
The Uganda Medical Association (Uma) has called on government to put the capital Kampala under a total local down to stop the further spread of Ebola and possibly avoid a national disaster that could claim many more lives.
Uma president president Dr Samuel Oledo told KFM Hot Seat show on Monday evening that the Museveni government was playing with fire and needed to swiftly lock down Kampala to stop the deadly Ebola from spreading into the whole capital city and the rest of the country since Kampala is the heart of Uganda from which people can troop in and move out, going back to their home districts.
Dr Oledo also warned against the politicization of the Ebola outbreak, saying that this could throw the country in a health crisis once the disease gets out hand, spreads across the country and becomes difficult or impossible to contain or stop. He was concerned that “Ugandans are still taking [the Ebola outbreak] as something so minor.” He also suspected that a number of people with Ebola might not even reporting cases to nearby health facilities, meaning that these could likely be infecting the people in their homes as well as their communities.
He made it clear that it was important for government to restrict movement as soon as they hear his message so that the capital city can be saved “when it is still early” because “the earlier we lock down Kampala, the better.”
It should be remembered that President Museveni has placed Kassanda and Mubende districts under an Ebola lockdown, issuing at least 24 directives in his third Ebola address (Read Museveni’s full third address and the 24 Ebola directives, word by word HERE).
Meanwhile, Health Minister Dr Jane Ruth Aceng is expected to deliver a comprehensive Ebola outbreak on Wednesday, October 26, the Ministry has announced. “The Minister of Health, Dr Jane Ruth Aceng Ocero will [today] make a comprehensive media briefing on the current Ebola outbreak in the country. Venue and time to be confirmed,” said Emmanuel Ainebyoona, the Senior Public Relations Officer of the Ministry of Health, at 4:43 pm on Tuesday.
It should be remembered that among those killed by Ebola are five health workers, the latest one being a Mubende Hospital owner. (Read Story Here).