The Chief of Defence Forces –CDF, Gen David Muhoozi, has directed his deputy Lt Gen Wilson Mbadi to form an anti-coronavirus task enforcement team that will work alongside the ministry of health to encounter the global pandemic.

Gen Muhoozi issued the directive to Lt Gen Mbadi during the training of top military chiefs in preparation for coronavirus pandemic.

Lt Col Deo Akiiki, the deputy defence and army spokesperson, quoting CDF, said Uganda People’s Defence Forces –UPDF was more than ready to observe and enforce President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni’s 14 directives issued on Wednesday evening.

“The CDF said that UPDF as an institution is ready to observe the President’s directives and enforce them. We will soon convene meetings with commanders and draw out a strategy on how to prevent the pandemic” Gen David Muhoozi said.

Museveni’s guidelines include temporary closure of education institutions, suspension of all religious, political, wedding and cultural gatherings. Other restrictions include’ banning discos, bars, music shows and concerts.

The training of military chiefs was conducted on Thursday by Ministry of Health together with World Health Organization- WHO at the headquarters of the Ministry of Defence and Veteran Affairs at Mbuya hill, Nakawa Division, in Kampala.

Muhoozi thanked the Ministry of Health for coming in at a very crucial time to work with the UPDF on how to combat the Pandemic. Muhoozi said as UPDF they are grateful for the opportunity to work with WHO and ministry of health in fighting “COVID 19.

“Seek the right information about COVID-19 and desist from dwelling on rumours circulating on social media which may lead to unnecessary tension. We also ask you [ministry of health] to translate the information on the flyers about COVID-19 into various local languages to allow many people access and be able to understand it,” Gen Muhoozi said.

Dr Issa Makumbi from the Public Health Emergency Operations Centre Ministry of Health applauded the CDF for allowing the ministry and his team to train the soldiers about the disease because it helps UPDF medics to further train other soldiers.

Dr Makumbi highlighted the need to intensify the preventive measures among the soldiers since they work in a group or often get into contact. Dr Makumbi asked everyone to comply with the Presidential directive because it is for their good to prevent the spread of the pandemic.

“I ask you [CDF] to involve the soldiers in the fight against (COVID-19) by deploying them to work with the Ministry of Health in manning the border points and other routes that may bring in foreigners illegally to stop people coming in with the Virus,” Dr Makumbi said.

Dr Makumbi cautioned the Chiefs about wearing of masks saying that there are three categories of people supposed to wear masks namely the Doctor who is nursing the affected person, the sick person and the caretaker. “Apart from the above category, no other person is supposed to wear masks,” Dr Makumbi said.

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