By Steven Enatu
The Soroti Resident District Commissioner, Patrick Okumu has strongly vowed to deal with the public transport Operators in Soroti who are still stiff-necked in violating the standard operating procedures.
Following the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic in the country in March last year, the government instituted a lockdown in a bid to curb its spread.
It slowly started lifting the ban to lessen the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic on the economy and on June 4, 2020, the government allowed public transport to resume but with some restrictions.
Bus and taxi operators were asked to carry half their capacity in a bid to encourage social distancing. The full capacity of a bus is 72 passengers and that of a taxi is 14.
Bus and taxi operators were also instructed to ensure that their passengers wore facemasks and sanitized their hands before entering the vehicles.
However, things evidently and gradually started to change with many violating the guideline to even load about 16 people in a Taxi currently and charging the price of a half capacity.
For example from Soroti to Lira, Taxi are charging 20,000shs while the taxi’s that go to Kaberamaido are charging 15,000shs and Mbale equally 15,000shs.
Now the RDC Soroti Okumu while addressing Teso journalists promised to deal with public means operators who have made it a business opportunity fleecing money from passengers who are paying dearly and yet no sop’s like it was passed by ministry of health in regards to COVID-19 are still being observed
He raised this during the meeting that was organized by the media center Uganda headed by Opondo Ofwono at Soroti senior secondary school today the 31st May 2021.
His warning also comes at a time that the president of Uganda Yoweri Kaguta Museveni addressed Ugandans on covid19 and warned the public to make a must to wear facemasks, wash hands and social distance. This is in order to curb the serious second wave of covid19 infection that has seen the country register more cases with Intensive care units in Mulago and most public hospitals reportedly full of covid19 patients.
On the 28th May 2021 in Soroti alone 22 cases of covid19 patients were registered and two deaths lately with infection hitting some schools like Madera Girls secondary school.
As of today the 31st May 2021 according to the data from the ministry of health Uganda, Uganda now has 46,623 confirmed cases, 363 deaths and 43401 recoveries while 364 active cases on admission.
Okumu further warned the youth to desist from abusing drugs and early abuse of alcohol saying they are on top of the game and this must be checked.