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Uganda Temporarily Bans Public Transport Amid Covid-19 Outbreak

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Uganda Temporarily Bans Public Transport Amid Covid-19 Outbreak

Uganda’s president Yoweri Museveni has announced a 14-day ban on public transport to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

Museveni said the ban will take effect immediately. Private cars will only be allowed to carry three passengers including the driver.

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Uganda has 14 confirmed cases of coronavirus, including an eight-month-old baby girl.

With news that some Ugandans who have never left the country are now contracting the virus, authorities want to limit movements within towns and between regions.

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Markets will now only be allowed to sell food.

Museveni announced the closure of all schools, bars, cinemas last week.  He also banned public gatherings for 32 days.

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Burundi, Sierra Leone Confirm Index Cases Of Coronavirus

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Burundi, Sierra Leone Confirm Index Cases Of Coronavirus

Burundi and Sierra Leone have confirmed Covid-19 index cases. Both countries were among a handful of African countries deemed coronavirus-free.

Sierra Leone president Julius Maada Bio said on Tuesday its first confirmed case involves a 37-year-old man who traveled from France mid-march and had been in isolation since his entry into the country.

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The government says it would not announce a total lockdown yet.  A year-long state of public health emergency has already been declared, commercial flights have been suspended, and schools have been closed.

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Meanwhile, Burundi`s health minister Thadée Ndikumana announced on Tuesday two nationals had tested positive for covid-19 after travelling from Rwanda and Dubai.

There had been doubts over Burundi’s claim that no-one in the country had coronavirus.

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Ethiopia Postpones Landmark August Election Due To Coronavirus

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Ethiopia Postpones Landmark August Election Due To Coronavirus

Ethiopia has postponed August parliamentary elections because of the coronavirus outbreak. The country’s electoral board said on Tuesday, the move to delay the highly anticipated general poll has been endorsed by key opposition parties as the coronavirus makes it impossible to prepare.

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The country says a new schedule would be announced once the threat of the pandemic was over.

Voter registration was to begin in April, and political parties would have commenced their campaigns late in May, but much of its planning, such as obtaining election materials on time and training staff, had been disrupted by the pandemic.

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The elections were to be the first since prime minister and Nobel Prize winner Abiy Ahmed came to office in 2018.  He has carried out wide-ranging reforms over the last two years.

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Lawmakers are expected to vote to extend the government’s mandate that will expire in a few months.

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Covid-19 Derails South Sudan’s Peacekeeping Troop Rotation

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Covid-19 Derails South Sudan's Peacekeeping Troop Rotation

The coronavirus pandemic has caused South Sudan to suspend troop rotation in its peacekeeping operation. The move is aimed at preventing the spread of the novel coronavirus.  But this has raised procedural concerns and poses immediate and longer-term implications.

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Five Asian countries are affected by this suspension.  China, South Korea, India, Nepal and Cambodia contribute a third of sixteen thousand peacekeeping staff currently deployed by the united nations mission in South Sudan.

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Some experts believe this decision to suspend the troop rotation will have an immediate effect on the mission and the UN’s broader peacekeeping capacity.  It is also believed there would be implications for long-term peace and stability in South Sudan.

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Experts say a prolonged stalled troop rotation would very likely cause severe fatigue among troops overdue for replacement. Rotations usually happen every twelve months.

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