Uganda: Ministry of Health – Movement of health workers and patients during the countrywide lockdown period (19.06.2021)

Uganda: Ministry of Health – Unregulated Use of Oxygen in Homes and Other Ungazetted places (18.06.2021)

Getafix of Mbarara: COVIDEX is selling hope in the middle of despair…

Now, it is official and its sold in pharmacies across Kampala, as the pandemic is surging and people are hanging on to whatever they can get to get some remedy and treatment for the coronavirus or COVID-19. This is not shocking, but a sad reality.

There is now a new hack in town. A Mbarara Professor Patrick Ogwang Engeu was has created his own mixture called “COVIDEX”. He is selling this blend and herbal mixture with the belief that it helps and treats the virus.

This isn’t the first of its kind. Only in January 2021 the President and his Presidential Scientific Initiative on Epidemics (PRESIDE) launched the mysterious UBV-01N. However, that one has later never been heard off.

What is striking is the Professor Ogwang Engeu have created other medicine already, but that doesn’t mean he has found the solution now as well. We don’t know the mixture, neither does we know what the dosage entails. It could be a placebo affect and a lie. Water with some colour or whatnot. It is a profitable business selling medicine and the Professor knows that.

By all means, I hope COVIDEX works. However, there been other things before. That has used herbal extractions from plants like Artemesia, Artemesia Annua and Stevia. We don’t know what he is using or have blended together.

We should all be reminded about the miracle drink from Madagascar, CVO – Tambvy who was sold internationally without being properly tested. The same is now happening locally with COVIDEX.

What the Professor is doing?

His selling hope. His selling these medical treatment on the whim and the hope that it works. It might do so, but without proper procedures and without proper testing of the herbal medicine. It is all baseless claims and without proof. We don’t know what it does or doesn’t do.

When there is no proof, no evidence or even what is the main components of the medicine. It is hard to believe that it does anything. There is no proof and nothing that says so. The medicine might work, but the Professor should have ensured it was tested and accepted by the National Drug Authority (NDA). Not just sell it on the open market without any certification or license to sell it.

For now, this is selling a dream, which could end up in a nightmare. This is making yourself a fortune on the gullible and the ones who needs hope in despair. That is tragic. Peace.

Uganda: Ministry of Health – Clarification on Reporting of COVID-19 and COVID-19 Related Deaths (13.06.2021)

The Exodus from Greater Kampala Metropolitan Area: A COVID-19 Worry!

On the 6th June 2021 President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni issued Presidential Directives for a partial lockdown. Where people are not allowed move between districts, except for the Greater Kampala Metropolitan region. Where schools are now closed for 42 days since yesterday on the 7th June 2021. All transport between the districts will close by 10th June 2021. This means the ones who studying and wants to go home have to leave within mere days after the announcement.

All students from the Universities has to travel from Kampala to the towns and villages up country. They have to leave their lodges and students homes to return home. As they have again to wait for the schools and higher education to open up again.

This is an exodus. The pictures of the last two days from the Old Taxi Park and elsewhere. Shows that people are ram-packed together awaiting to get a seat in a taxi or buses. So, until the 10th June there will be crowds going away from Greater Kampala Region. This means everyone who is living on the gig-economy, students and others will flee the city. They will also leave Waksio, Mukono and other districts in connection to the capital.

There are so many leaving. We should worry about all the possible asymptomatic Covid-19 infected persons who travels from Kampala to the rest of the Republic. The taxi park and other places filled to the brim with people. Who are leaving Kampala. You cannot blame them. They cannot live or study. Everything in their lives are suspended for 42 days in this partial lockdown.

This inter-district lockdown is creating a dangerous precedent. Expect the virus to escalate and spread even further. As people are canned together and going across the Republic. They are awaiting their turn and their ability to return outside the Greater Kampala Metropolitan area.

We really don’t have to be scientist about this. What the state have put into play is endangering their citizens. This is happening after the President have kept several big-events, which is in breach of the Standard Operative Procedures (SOPs) in consideration to the COVID-19 measures. Therefore, the sudden rise of new cases could come from the inauguration of the President and from the Members of Parliament sworn-in as well. Therefore, the President should look into his own actions and now is creating a new possible rise of it.

The people are scared and know the Ministry of Health is lacking. The public knows the state have a limit of beds and respirators. The state doesn’t have what it need to contain it. They are lacking even if the state have borrowed and gotten massive amount of funds from international donors or the International Monetary Fund/ World Bank. This should have covered this, but don’t expect it to be spend on the needed equipment or training of health care workers. Nah, that isn’t happening.

This is why this is so dire and shows the mentality of the state. The public is all on their own and have to fetch hope elsewhere. The state only commands, but gives no direction or have any safety net for them. We should be worried about the crowds and the way they where put together. This folks did their best, but there was nothing prepared. No extra buses, taxis or anything but only Presidential Directives ensuring this exodus.

The Presidential Directive should have had some sort of measures and ideas of the consequences of it. They should have ensured transports, ability to use various parts of Kampala and not just the Old Taxi Park. There should be openings and rented buses as well from the state. As they would know that the students needs to return to up-country and cannot afford to stay in Kampala now.

Again, you see how the state is lacking and not delivering to the needs of its citizens. While possibly making the pandemic worse and where SOPs becomes pointless, as people are going to the same small space to get away from Kampala.

This is sadly insane, but show how little the government care. They can publish and issue Presidential Decrees, but don’t have thought about the implications or how it would be implemented. Which in the end hits the citizens who is touched by these directives. It is tragic and the losers are all the ones who travel and the ones in association with them. We should be worried, because this is ensuring COVID-19 will come to every corner of the republic and possibly make the pandemic worse.

That should worry the Ministry of Health and all other authorities. Because, they are responsible to make this happen and they didn’t prepare for the inter-district lockdown. Peace.

Federation for Uganda Medical Interns (FUMI): Sit Down Strike of all Medical Interns in Uganda (10.05.2021)

Uganda: Ministry of Health – Response to Allegations made by the Uganda Nurses and Midwives Union (06.05.2021)

Getafix of Kampala: The launch of UBV-01N

In April 2020 Madagascar President Andry Rajoelina launched his herbal and natural remedy to the Coronavirus or COVID-19. That wasn’t clinically tested or proven to have any effects towards the virus. I wouldn’t mind if it did work. It had some natural components, which is known to have effect in concern to malaria, but to this day… there haven’t been any study or anything that proved that the Madagascar herbal tea had any substantial remedy towards it.

So, why do I mention this today? Well, today … President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni launches UBV-01N from the Presidential Scientific Initiative on Epidemics (PRESIDE). It will now be clinically tested. However, I smell the same as Yester-year and I wish it wasn’t so. Not that I don’t want remedies or drugs working against the virus. However, this sort of play seems like a game of propaganda.

It is like we are supposed to forget about the Tambvy filled with herbal remedies of Stevia and Artemesia, Artemesia Annua, which didn’t work. So, what sort of herbal mixture does the Ugandans have that the Madagascar scientists didn’t have? I wonder, because they are so numb to the vital factors of the pills or potion. We don’t know that and there is no list of ingredients. I don’t expect to get a fixed list like when you make a pizza margarita, but I do expect to know at least the two main components of the remedy. Because, there are medical and pharmaceutical books where they explain the usage of certain plants and other traditional herbal remedies. Therefore, if they are scientifically doing this. Then, they should be transparent about that.

This is a natural product and means another herbal medicine. The ones calling this a vaccine is wrong. That is another type of medication and shouldn’t get it twisted. The UBV-01N will help the virus from spreading and hopefully help you cope with the virus. Maybe even strengthening your immune-system, but it will not fully cure you from it. A herbal medicine will strengthen your body and help your system to handle the disease, but not “kill it”.

By all means the President wants this to be successful. Just like the counterpart in Madagascar wanted in 2020. We are seeing similar efforts. Soon in Pan-African spirit someone will praise this and by this in bulk. Even when there is no proof, because this is an answer to Western medicine. Western medicine is based on not only scientific practices, but also on remedies made by plants and such. So, I just hope it won’t be biased. Every sort of effort to help the global pandemic is cool and a good in itself. However, I lack trust to the ideals and the possible effects. Especially, when they are not dropping the basics even.

There should be some authorities and associations who should study the components of the medicine itself. Where they release the important factors and what its made off, which is vital. Because, if we know what is components. Then we can check what the herbs have been used against before and what scientific research on these. This would direct us and show what direction the Ugandan scientists have in this manner.

So, as long as I cannot check the vital parts of the remedy. I have a hard time trusting the usage or the promotion of the clinical test of it. The studies of this herbal or natural drug should be released. The sheet of ingredients. That would prove the values and the ones studying it could verify it. Just like I could do with Tambwy of Madagascar. There you could check the two main components and could question the use of it against COVID-19.

The same is needed with UBV-01N. Peace.

Uganda: Nationwide analysis finds Gulu, Jinja, Kasese worst affected by hunger during lockdown (07.10.2020)

For the rest of the year, Gulu and Kasese are expected to remain at Crisis levels even while their markets are supplied with harvests.

KAMPALA, Uganda, October 7, 2020 – Ugandans in nine urban areas were at Crisis levels of food insecurity or worse for months leading to August because of negative impacts of the COVID-19 lockdown. The worst affected of were Gulu, Jinja and Kasese where nearly one in three people struggled to find nutritious food on a regular basis.

For the rest of the year, Gulu and Kasese are expected to remain at Crisis levels even while their markets are supplied with harvests.

These were some of the findings of the most comprehensive Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC) analysis conducted in Uganda to date, covering Kampala and other urban areas, the Karamoja region and refugee settlements and host communities for the first time.

The analysis was carried out by the Government of Uganda and three UN agencies and measures food insecurity from June through August and projected from September to December. It was informed in part by real-time data gathered by remote telephone monitoring of households in 13 urban areas, refugee hosting districts and Karamoja region in the northeast. It is the first time, real-time data informed the IPC on urban areas.

The IPC attributed Crisis food insecurity to the loss of livelihoods in the informal sector, tourism, the travel and events industry and the education sector, reduced remittances and reduced commercial networks due to the closure of borders.

Releasing the results of the analysis, the Minister for Disaster Preparedness and Refugees, Eng. Hillary Onek, said that the Government is committed to ensuring food and nutrition security and well-being for all people in Uganda, including those in urban areas.

Speaking while releasing the results of the analysis, the Minister for Disaster Preparedness and Refugees, Eng. Hillary Onek, said Government is committed to ensuring food and nutrition security and well-being for all people in the country, including those in urban areas.

“With these new findings, we now know, reliably, who the most food-insecure people are in Uganda, where they are and what we can do to save lives and preserve livelihoods. Such knowledge is critical before we take any decisions,” Mr Onek said.

“We thank our partners for working with us to come up with this very important analysis. We now must continue to work together to find solutions to the issues raised in the study,” Mr Onek added.

Currently, through a collaboration with the Uganda Bureau of Statistics, the United Nations makes 10,000 calls a month to monitor food security in refugee areas, 12 urban areas and Karamoja region.

Using the real-time and other data, the IPC found that refugees in all 13 settlements in Uganda along with more than 1.3 million Ugandans in refugee-hosting districts and Karamoja region experienced Crisis or worse levels of hunger between June and August.

In Karamoja, all districts had worrying levels of malnutrition among young children and pregnant and nursing women, with malnutrition above emergency levels in Moroto and Napak.

The IPC attributed the high levels of food insecurity in refugee hosting districts and Karamoja to WFP’s ration cuts for refugees, the lockdown, floods and subsequent food losses, animal and human diseases, insecurity in some parts of Karamoja and reduced remittances as key contributors to the situation.

“Ration cuts for refugees will remain in place until we secure sufficient funding. To be able to provide full rations for refugees in the settlements until the end of 2020, WFP needs nearly US$15.3 million immediately,” said WFP Uganda Country Director, Mr El-Khidir Daloum.

FAO’s Deputy Representative, Ms Priya Gujadhur said “As part of the UN Uganda’s Emergency Appeal launched earlier this year, FAO has appealed for USD 7.8 million for food security, nutrition and livelihoods interventions. This will allow FAO to provide agricultural livelihood support and training in climate smart agricultural practices to help up to 10,000 of the most vulnerable households produce for their own consumption and diversify income sources through value chain development, thereby strengthening their resilience.”

Even with coming harvests this year, it is expected households will continue to struggle with food shortages partly because of lost incomes during the lockdown. All refugee settlements are expected to remain at Crisis level at best. Food security should improve in nine out of 12 worst-affected refugee-hosting districts. Malnutrition is expected to decline in two districts in Karamoja in the coming months.

The Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries, the Ministry for Disaster Preparedness and Refugees, Kampala Capital City Authority, the Uganda Bureau of Statistics, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and WFP participated in the IPC analysis. The European Union, World Bank and UK Aid funded the exercise

Opinion: For 65 dollars more and you can enter the Republic…

It is amazing that a Republic like Uganda can charge $65 or 245,000 shillings on entering the Republic to be tested for COVID-19 or Coronavirus. This from a same government that has gotten grants upon grants to combat the disease. That is why this is infuriating.

Yes, no republic have boundless of funds or money to combat a global pandemic like this. While the government of Uganda have gotten support from all sort of foreign donors and multi-national organizations to beat it. Still, they sought to profit and cover their expenses on the ones arriving at Entebbe and the border points.

This means, the truckers, foreign aid workers, tourists and the ones who has the disease has to be tested, pay and then even quarantine somewhere. Certainly all of that costs and the quarantine “hostel” or “hotel” will not come for free either.

The “Cost Recovery Fee” is really showing the blatant disregard for the ones entering the Republic. Also the diaspora who are stranded and has to cough up funds to pay additional fees on entering. Like foreign students and maids abroad cannot afford this. Neither can the average truckers. This will either stop the testing or create a market for questionable behaviour. Since people cannot afford this.

Yes, the UN workers and Multi-National Organizations can afford doing this to support their projects. They will just allocate funds to expenses to secure their staff. However, the random and ordinary citizen cannot afford this. This is such a huge cost.

This is also spitting in the face of the donors and the ones offering grants to Uganda. As they are charging the same people on entering. Ensuring they are both offering grants and also getting fees to cover expenses. They are double paying for this.

Nobody is winning on this. The National Resistance Movement (NRM) just showing they have no sense and doesn’t want to cover their bases. They rather get additional funds. Then actually ensure the safety of the border points and see if they can trace the sources of the spread.

That they are doing it is insane. The state should know better and the donors should now ask for transparency and accountability over the COVID-19 Funds. Since, they are now clearly asking to be covered twice and sometimes by their own, but also by the same people who has used grants and donations to make it possible. Peace.