|Ministry of Health Advisory|
|Coronavirus (COVID-19) Alert: Avoid travel, parties, and events. Follow expert advice to protect your family.|
By Arinda Nsheeka
Rev. Fr. John Bazimenyera, the dean of Mutolere Parish in Kabale diocese, South Western Uganda, is in trouble for defying a presidential ban on closure of churches to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
Fr. Bazimenyera, who is currently being detained at Kisoro Police Station, was found with two unidentified nuns whose identities were on Sunday morning found conducting a Holy Mass at St. Peter’s Gisoro Catholic Parish in Kisoro Municipality.
Despite President Museveni’s directive about ban on public gatherings as a preventive measure against Corona virus, Fr. Bazimenyera went ahead and organized a Mass which attracted about 40 believers.
As they prepared to have a holy communion, security officials under the command of Nelson Bataringaya, the Uganda Peoples Defense Forces (UPDF) Commander of 35th Battalion, swung into action and dispersed them.
Bataringaya also arrested Fr Bazimenyera, two nuns and handed them over to Kisoro police station for detention.
Believers, who were mostly women, took off on seeing security officials.
Bataringaya told ChimpReports that he was shocked to receive information about the ongoing Mass at St. Peter’s Gisoro Catholic Parish yet the nation is now on alert over the deadly coronavirus.
Bataringaya condemned Fr Bazimenyera’s act of defying the President’s directive which he said was issued with the aim of protecting Ugandans from contracting the virus.
Abel Bizimana, Kisoro district LCV Chairman, said such a priest should be sensitizing members of the public to take all the necessary measures of preventing Corona virus than leading a Mass.
Last night, Health Minister, Dr Jane Ruth Aceng announced the first case of Covid-19 in Uganda.
Aceng said that the case is a 36-year-old Ugandan, a resident of Kagungulu Zone, Kibuli, who returned home on Saturday aboard Ethiopian Airlines from Dubai.
He traveled out of Uganda on March 17 for business.
On his return, he presented with symptoms of high fever and poor appetite.
His temperature was at 38 degrees centigrade, prompting the authorities to isolate him for further tests, which later proved positive.
According to Aceng, the victim is now isolated at Entebbe Grade B Hospital.
President Museveni who last evening declared the closer of borders has tweeted that he will today at 4:00PM hold another address about further steps to take in curbing the possible spread of Covid-19.