Rwanda, through the Ministry of Health on Saturday, April 18, introduced an additional COVID-19 precautionary directive that urges citizens to wear face masks when at home and going out for essential services or activities.
Dr. Daniel Ngamije, Minister of Health said this during an interview with the public broadcaster, Rwanda Television.
The Ministry had previously called on citizens to leave masks for COVID 19 patients as well as health practitioners directly interacting with these patients.
However, Ngamije in the interview noted that the compulsory use of face masks has proved to be effective in many countries as far as curbing this pandemic is concerned.
He said: " In addition to other COVID-19 precautionary measures, we urge citizens to wear face masks when going for essential activities and when at home because they have proved to be effective in preventing this virus worldwide."
The Minister continued to say that: "Beginning with Monday (April 20), local factories will start manufacturing these masks and selling them at an affordable price, so that citizens can start buying them."
Liberia, Morocco, Guinea Conakry and Kenya are some African countries that have ordered the compulsory wearing of masks. South Africa has also encouraged her citizens to wear face masks in public places.
As per the World Health Organization (WHO), COVID-19 is primarily transmitted when someone infected with it coughs, speaks or sneezes.
The droplets from the mouth or nose of this person then gets on a surface, and another person gets infected too when he or she touches that surface and touches the nose, mouth or eyes.
The above signifies the encouragement of washing of hands with water and soap or with a hand sanitizer because they have proved to kill this virus, according to WHO.
4 more recover from COVID-19
Meanwhile, Rwanda on Saturday confirmed four more recovered cases of COVID-19 and one new positive case from 712 tested samples.
This took the tally of cumulative positive cases to 144, of which 69 are recovered cases.
With no reported fatality since the outbreak, the country is also under a lockdown that will go through April 30.
All patients, according to the Ministry, are currently in stable conditions at designated treatment facilities.
In the Ministry's daily updates, it continuously reiterates that patients should facilitate the tracing exercise by disclosing people who came in contact with them.