Uganda Introduces Fee For Voluntary Coronavirus Testing

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Ugandans, submitting themselves voluntarily for coronavirus tests, will now pay $65 (£50) fee, the government said at the weekend.

Uganda, which has 2,900 positive cases, 1,288 recoveries and at least 30 deaths, have so far tested 350,000 people for the virus.

The country’s government said firms sending their workers for tests would also have to pay.

It, however, exempted those exhibiting symptoms of the virus or have been in contact with someone who has contracted Covid-19 from the payments.

The East African country said the fee would contribute to the cost of managing the pandemic but there are fears, in some quarters, that it would disrupt travel and the resumption of tourism, as well as trade.

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Meanwhile, the country’s taskforce in the fight to control the disease will review the reopening of schools that were closed in March.

The minister of ICT and national guidance, Judith Nabakooba, said President Yoweri Museveni has ordered a review to see the possibility of a phased reopening of schools, starting with candidate classes and clinical medical students.

He also ordered a review into the status of closed sectors like tourism, reopening of Entebbe International Airport among others.

Nabakooba said the team is expected to report back to the president early next week and thereafter he will address the country on the next steps forward.

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