Uganda: Govt to Get Hard On Enforcement of Masks for Travelers in Public Transport

5 January 2022
Nile Post News (Kampala)

The Minister for Works and Transport Gen Katumba has said the requirement of vaccination cards by passengers before boarding public transport means might not be easy to enforce especially by public transport operators but insisted government is to be strict on facemasks for all passengers.

Addressing the country last week, President Museveni said before boarding public transport means including taxis and buses, passengers must show proof of full Covid vaccination.

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However, addressing journalists on Wednesday, Gen Katumba Wamala said public transport operators might find it had to identify fake and genuine vaccination cards.

"Every crew member of a public service vehicle, which include the driver and conductor or turn man, and any other crew member, must be fully vaccinated. It would also be preferable that all passengers are vaccinated. It may not be possible for transporters to double check on that but for your personal and your own life, don't go for a forged certificate," Gen Katumba said.

"It(forged covid certificate) doesn't help you or anybody. You are cheating yourself. Get vaccinated because the vaccination centres are open and free of charge."

Enforce masks

The Works and Transport Minister however warned that government is going to be strict on enforcing the wearing of facemasks among passengers in public transport means to ensure adherence.

"The minimum should be that you must have a mask. The police has a right to stop any vehicle at any time and if they find any passengers without masks or drivers and conductor without masks, they are allowed to stop that journey," Gen Katumba said.

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He insisted that Traffic Police will carry out spot checks on public transport vehicles to check for those not wearing masks and that those not putting them on will have to face the consequences.

The Uganda Transporters Development Agency (UTRADA) chairperson, Mustafa Mayambala asked police to be hard during the requirement of masks among tax operators and passengers.

"As public transport operators, we ask police to be strict on drivers, conductors and passengers who don't want to put on masks. Those found in violation should be arrested and fined heavily,"Mayambala said.

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