Schools reopening doubtable as top officials cite worrying signals of Covid19 third wave

Dr. Monica Musenero

NEWS. Top officials in the government of Uganda have said schools may not be reopened soon because of the worrying signals of a possible third wave of Covid-19 pandemic.

These top officials’ comments come just  a day after sources at the Education ministry revealed that schools would reopen in two weeks time with the P.1, P.2 and P.3 learners as well as S.1&2 students given the priority. 

Dr. Monica Musenero, the senior presidential advisor on epidemics who said that they have already started seeing some signals of the third wave stressed that when it comes then schools can’t reopen.

Musenero noted that the government is still sticking to the plan of sufficient vaccination before reopening schools.

“Reopening of schools depends on the vaccination of teachers and children above 18 years”, she said.

As of August 23, a total of 170,234 teachers had received their first jab and up to 61,848 had been fully vaccinated with two doses out of the government target of 550,000 teachers in the country.

Mr Emmanuel Ainebyoona, the Ministry of Health spokesperson,  in a tweet noted that clusters of Covid-19 infections are already being reported in communities and hospitals are experiencing an increase in admissions.

‚ÄúThere are several other positive patients admitted under home-based care. This means transmission is still ongoing. We need to keep our preventive measures active and also observe all the Ministry of Health guidelines and SOPs” he added.

A total of 23,951 people are undergoing home-based care, according to the Ministry of Health statistics and 386 people are admitted in hospitals across the country.

Since the outbreak of the pandemic last year, a total 119,915 cases have been registered, 3,012 people have died and 95,578 people recovered.  

Dr Henry Kajumbula, the head of infection control and prevention in the Ministry of Health scientific advisory committee on Covid-19, said there is need to increase vaccine coverage to minimise the potential and severity of the third wave