Uganda is still in lockdown and restrictions are in place across the country. At the time of writing there have been just over 1,200 reported cases of COVID-19 and 5 deaths. At 7 pm every evening a curfew applies across the country until 6 am the following day, except for medical emergencies. Many people have lost their jobs or been laid off without pay. Food prices have escalated. There has been some easing of lockdown restrictions and some changes enabling greater freedom of movement. Some businesses have been allowed to re-open apart from salons, gyms and shopping arcades. Some shops have been allowed to reopen and public transport is now operating on a limited basis, having been suspended months ago. Private vehicles are limited to 4 occupants per vehicle and a lot of cycling is taking place from Luwero to Kiryanyonza and further afield. Facemasks are compulsory to everyone going out in public.
School pupils and staff have not returned and churches cannot hold services. Schools have been closed and all pupils and staff sent home. Work is under way to clean the school premises extra thoroughly, and have them ready for the return of pupils and staff. Work is ongoing to see how social distancing can be effectively applied in the schools and dining hall, resolve school transport issues, and train the pupils in the use of hand sanitisers. Gabriel is directing efforts towards retaining teaching staff so that the schools are fully staffed upon resumption. Similarly, he is intent on maintaining pupil numbers so that as many as possible return in January. Work to complete the boys and girls dormitory blocks at the secondary school will restart soon. The blocks are both complete at ground floor level and are inhabited by pupils when school is in session. The remaining work involves the completion of the upper floors to increase their capacity and allow for more living space for the pupils.
Gabriel was delighted with, and grateful for, the emergency relief package sent to the Project to alleviate immediate suffering. Consequently, he has been able to pay teachers’ salaries and give support to sponsored children.
Please pray for the physical and mental health of all our friends in Luwero during these extraordinary times. It is a huge boon to them to know that they are in our prayers.