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Ugandan activist gets 18-month sentence for online poem about leader

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A Ugandan activist, who wrote a poem criticising long-time President Yoweri Museveni was sentenced to a year and a half in prison on Friday, stripping in protest as the sentence was read.

Stella Nyanzi “was convicted on cyber harassment against the president and his mother,” judiciary spokesman Solomon Muita said.

Nyanzi was sentenced via a video link to her prison cell, during which she “stripped naked,” Muita said.

The activist and university lecturer was arrested after posting a poem on Facebook in 2018 that read in part: “Yoweri Museveni, they say it was your birthday yesterday. You should have died at birth you dirty delinquent dictator.”

Museveni, 74, has been in power since 1986, and in 2018 made the highly controversial move of extending presidential term limits that could now see him remain in power until 2030. (dpa/NAN)

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Ugandan cabinet approves human organ donation, trade bill

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Uganda’s cabinet has approved a bill that, if enacted by parliament, will regulate human organ donation and trade in the east African country, a top official said here on Thursday.

Judith Nabakooba, minister of ICT and national guidance said in a statement issued here that the bill dubbed ‘Uganda Human Organ Donation and Tissue Transplant Bill‘ would soon be presented before parliament for approval.

“The bill seeks to establish a legal framework for human organs, cells and tissue transplant in Uganda and also regulate donations and trade in human organs, cells and tissue for safety and security of Ugandans,” Nabakooba said.

Non-governmental organizations and civil society argue that there is an increase in illicit human organ trade in Africa, partly because of weak laws and enforcement, poverty and human trafficking.

(XINHUA)

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Four South Sudan soldiers shot dead by Ugandan military in contested border area

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At least four South Sudanese soldiers were killed by their counterparts from neighboring Uganda over the weekend, a military spokesman said Tuesday.

Lul Ruia Koang, spokesperson for the South Sudan Defense Forces (SSPDF) said the incident between SSPDF forces and the Uganda People’s Defense Forces (UPDF) happened on Sunday after the two sides exchanged fire in a contested border area in the southern parts of the country.

UPDF soldiers opened fire on our soldiers in Buya and as a result, they killed four on the spot and wounded another,” the spokesperson told Xinhua by phone.

The disputed area is claimed by communities of Kajo-Keji county of Central Equatoria state in South Sudan and their neighbors from Yumbe district of Uganda.

Koang said the SSPDF soldiers were conducting foot patrol to enforce cross-border movement restrictions at the time of the clashes.

“The area where our servicemen were killed is a disputed area,” the spokesperson said, adding that calm has since returned to the region after the two governments agreed to investigate the cause of the fighting.

“We have requested for an investigation to be conducted so that we know why they opened fire on soldiers who were on foot patrol and does not pose any threat to them,” he said.

(XINHUA)

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CNOOC endorses Tullow’s sale of Ugandan oil stake to Total

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China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) has endorsed Tullow’s sale of its stake in Uganda’s oil to Total, a French oil corporation.

Tullow, a British oil corporation, in a statement issued on Thursday said on May 26 it received a notice from CNOOC saying the Chinese oil giant had elected not to exercise its preemption rights.

Tullow on April 23 announced that it had agreed the sale of its assets in Uganda to Total and that CNOOC had rights of preemption to acquire 50 percent of these assets on the same terms and conditions as Total.

Tullow, CNOOC and Total have an equal stake in Uganda’s oil sector.

Tullow said in the statement that following CNOOC‘s no-objection, there are no changes to the previously announced transaction or timeline and Tullow continues to expect the transaction to complete in the second half of 2020.

The British oil corporation said the 575 million U.S. dollars transaction still remains subject to a number of conditions, including approval by Tullow’s shareholders, and Uganda government tax agreements among others.

(XINHUA)

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Ugandan president urges mask-wearing in public places

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Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni has urged people to wear face masks in public places all the time as the East African country strives to contain the spread of COVID-19.

In a video clip issued by State House on Friday, Museveni said it seems that some people do not understand the value of a face mask, thinking it merely as decoration.

“This is to stop you infecting other people, so you should put it over your mouth and over your nose all the time as long as you are in public, even when you are speaking,’’ Museveni said while wearing a mask.

Police on Wednesday started enforcing the mandatory wearing of face masks outdoor.

People without masks are not allowed to access the central business district.

Museveni, on Monday, announced the mandatory wearing of face masks as he extended the lockdown for 14 days, while easing some imposed restrictions.

Uganda has so far recorded 101 confirmed cases of COVID-19 with 55 recoveries since the outbreak started in the country on March 21.

AIB

Edited By: Abdulfatah Babatunde (NAN)

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Ugandan president urges mask wearing in public places

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Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni has urged people to wear face masks in public places all the time as the East African country strives to contain the spread of COVID-19.

In a video clip issued by State House on Friday, Museveni said it seems that some people do not understand the value of a face mask, thinking it merely as decoration.

“This is to stop you infecting other people, so you should put it over your mouth and over your nose all the time as long as you are in public, even when you are speaking,” Museveni said while wearing a mask.

Police on Wednesday started enforcing the mandatory wearing of face masks outdoor. People without masks are not allowed to access the central business district.

Museveni on Monday announced the mandatory wearing of face masks as he extended the lockdown for 14 days, while easing some imposed restrictions.

Uganda has so far recorded 101 confirmed cases of COVID-19 with 55 recoveries since the outbreak started in the country on March 21.

(XINHUA)

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Ugandan peacekeeper tests positive for COVID-19 in Somalia

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A Ugandan peacekeeper serving under the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) has tested positive for COVID-19 in the Somalian capital of Mogadishu, a military spokesperson said here on Thursday.

“He is doing well and receiving great medical attention. Thanks to the UPDF (Uganda People’s Defense Forces) health officers that have gained practical experience through their support to the national anti-COVID-19 campaign,” said Richard Karemire, Ugandan military spokesperson.

“The rest of the troops are observing guidelines issued by the government of Uganda, the AMISOM leadership and, of course, the host federal government of Somalia,” he said.

Those who have had recent close contact with the infected peacekeeper have been put under quarantine in Mogadishu, according to the military.

Somalia’s health ministry on Wednesday confirmed 54 new COVID-19 cases, taking its total to 582.

Uganda has over 6,000 troops serving under the AMISOM in the volatile East African nation.

(XINHUA)

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Ugandan military medics withdraw from main hospital following progress in COVID-19 fight

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Dozens of military medical personnel on Monday withdrew from Uganda’s national referral hospital after most of the COVID-19 patients admitted there completed their treatment and were discharged.

Byarugaba Baterana, executive director of Mulago National Referral Hospital, hailed the military personnel for the support they rendered when COVID-19 patients were admitted at the hospital.

“Thank you for being disciplined and for fighting the pandemic. We have together reduced COVID-19 to the minimum, disabled it and actually defeated it with a heavy blow,” Baterana was quoted as saying in a military statement issued in Kampala.

“Out of the 23 COVID-19 patients admitted at Mulago National Referral Hospital, 21 have been since discharged while only two remain at the facility,” she said.

Baterana said the two patients may be discharged on Tuesday.

Maj. Gen. Ambrose Musinguzi, the chief of military medical services, said the army is mandated to support civil authority in cases of any catastrophe like the COVID-19 pandemic.

The military team would now be sent out to assist district task forces in the fight against the pandemic, Musinguzi said.

Uganda, according to the ministry of health, has so far reported 79 confirmed cases of COVID-19, of which 46 have been discharged. Some patients are admitted at Entebbe regional referral hospital.
(XINHUA)

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Ugandan scientists developing COVID-19 vaccine: president

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Ugandan scientists are developing a COVID-19 vaccine, President Yoweri Museveni said on Sunday.

“The scientists are working on the vaccine,” said Museveni in a televised address, adding that scientists at Uganda Virus Research Institute in Entebbe have sequenced and understood the strain of the coronavirus in Uganda.

He added that other scientists are developing diagnostic materials.

The president also thanked health workers for what he called a wonderful job in treating the 55 Ugandan COVID-19 patients.

“We do not have a single death from coronavirus. All the 55 are alive and 28 of these have been cured and discharged,” Museveni said.
(XINHUA)

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Ugandan parliament approves $75.2m budget to combat COVID-19

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The Ugandan parliament has approved a budget of 284 billion shillings (about 75.2 million dollars) to support the government’s efforts in combating COVID-19.

The lawmakers allocated the Ministry of Health 104 billion shillings (about 27.5 million dollars) for the recruitment of additional health workers, and procurement of protective gear, test kits and intensive care beds, among others.

The security sector, which includes police, military, prisons, immigration and intelligence services, was allocated 77 billion shillings (about 20.4 million dollars) for the enforcement of control measures to prevent the spread of the virus.

The Ministry of Disaster Preparedness received 59 billion shillings (about 15.6 million dollars) to provide food for 2 million vulnerable people in urban centres for 30 days.

The rest of the allocation went to local governments, the Kampala Capital City Authority, and the Ministry of Information Communication Technology, among others.

The parliament urged the government to mobilise more donations from development partners, private sector and other well-wishers.

Uganda currently has 52 confirmed cases of COVID-19, but the government fears that more cases may arise since some of the confirmed cases have interacted with the public before they were isolated.

Edited By: Fatima Sule/Maharazu Ahmed
(NAN)

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Contact US: editor @nnn.com.ng, nnnnews247 @gmail.com

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