The government of Uganda, through the Ministry of Health, on Tuesday September 1, 2020, activated the recently introduced Covid-19 test charges.
The charges, according the Ministry of Health, apply to five categories of people, but is mandatory for all cross border truck drivers.
“Be informed that effective September 1, 2020, you will be required to pay for this service. The categories of people required to pay for this service include; all truck drivers crossing through all Points of Entries including Busia,” reads part of the new notice at Busia Point of Entry in Eastern Uganda.
The other categories are individuals seeking to know their Covid-19 status, Organisations, (Government and Private) that wish to test their staff for purposes of prevention.
Also, Ugandans returning from abroad will be required to pay for their tests as well as visitors arriving into the country from other countries.
The charge fee that was introduced is Two hundred forty thousand five hundred shillings (Shs 240.500) approximately US Dollars Sixty five (USD 65).
At Busia border, payments for the Covid-19 tests are done at Stanbic Bank to the MOH COVID TESTING FUNDS, Account Number 9030017657983.
Health teams at the port unit located on border points now take samples after one presents proof of bank payments.
This new development was received with mixed reactions from both truck drivers and transport companies.
On Monday, when the charges were introduced, many truck drivers were left stranded due to lack of money as it was not earlier planned for their trip.
This website has established that the number of drivers taking covid-19 tests has dropped at all Points of Entry in the last 24 hours and traffic is building up again.