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18.01.2022 00:27 News >> Uganda Suspends COVID Testing At Land Borders With Kenya Over Fee Protests

Uganda Suspends COVID Testing At Land Borders With Kenya Over Fee Protests

Transit truck drivers decline to pay $30 for mandatory tests at border, saying it is too costly.

By Hamza Kyeyune
KAMPALA, Uganda – (AA) Uganda's Health Ministry announced Monday that it has suspended COVID-19 testing at its land borders with Kenya, where transit truck drivers have been protesting the high fee charged for the tests.
Uganda imposed mandatory COVID-19 testing for all incoming travelers, including truck drivers, in December last year. This according to the Ministry of Health was to protect the country against the spread of the omicron coronavirus variant.
But truck drivers have declined to pay the $30 fee for tests at the border as directed by the government, saying it is too costly.
This has resulted in long queues of trucks and heavy traffic build-ups of trucks on the Kenyan side stretching for tens of kilometers and a shortage of petroleum products in Uganda since Jan. 1.
Most fuel stations in Uganda that still have supplies have sharply raised prices, but most of them are dry.
In some districts, a liter of petrol costs US$3.40, twice the normal price of US$1.70.
Uganda's Health Ministry said the continued build-up of trucks on the Kenyan side of the border was creating a super spreader scenario that they want to avoid.
"The Ministry of Health has decided to immediately and temporarily suspend mandatory testing at the two border points to ease movements of trucks into and within the country to avert a potential super spreader event," it said.
Uganda is a net importer of petroleum products with an average current daily consumption of 6.5 million liters, according to the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development. -



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