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Gov’t Rolls Out Village COVID-19 Task Forces To Battle Deadly Pandemic

Following the launch of the National Community Engagement Strategy (CES) for COVID-19 response on October 20, 2020, Office of the Prime Minister, Uganda Red Cross, Local Government and other partners have rolled out the creation of Village COVID-19 Taskforces as part of the implementation of the Community Engagement Strategy to fight the pandemic.

The strategy is aimed at strengthening the health systems in Uganda and institutionalize the Inter-sectoral Collaboration.

The strategy also seeks to ensure that all people in Uganda are aware, empowered and actively participate in the prevention and control of the outbreak of COVID-19 as both a duty and a right using existing structures, systems and resources.

It comes as the country is dealing with the Phase IV of the pandemic.

During the rollout of the task forces at Office of The Prime Minister, the Prime Minister of Uganda Dr. Ruhakana Rugunda said that government has decided to urgently roll out the village COVID-19 task forces to mitigate the impact of community spread of COVID-19 in the ongoing political season.

“The community engagement strategy states that village COVID-19 task force should be established in every village in Uganda to support the national response strategy. The ministry of health has also been tasked to liaise with the ministry of finance on financing of this strategy,” Rugunda said.

The Secretary General of the Uganda Red Cross, Robert Kwesiga said that at the rate at which the infection is increasing in Uganda, there is need to supplement government in concerted efforts geared towards providing technical knowledge, financial and human resources to be able to manage the pandemic.

He added that the community engagement strategy will go a long way in contributing to the fight against the pandemic with the local authorities.

“Uganda Red Cross has a special relationship with government; we have been involved in saving lives as an auxiliary institution through border screening, ambulance services, communication, and community engagement,” he said.

The Community Engagement Strategy which is chaired by Prof. Francis Omaswa is supported by different government ministries and development partners including Uganda Red Cross Society among others.

The State Minister for primary health care Dr. Joyce Moriku Kaducu said that due to the increasing number of the infections of COVID-19, ministry of health has developed a nutrition guideline for the public to use especially during this time of COVID-19.

“The guideline is helpful to the general population on how to have useful diet which is central to keep the immunity system working. We are also emphasising physical activities to keep physically fit,” she said.

By Drake Nyamugabwa

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