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Africa News of Thursday, 27 January 2022

Source: theeastafrican.co.ke

Rwanda reviews curfew, allows gatherings as Covid cases drop

Rwandan president, Paul Kagame Rwandan president, Paul Kagame

Rwanda has eased Covid-19 rules allowing social gatherings and public events to resume after the country recorded a decline in Covid-19 infections.

It has also adjusted the curfew from midnight to 4 am, and businesses are allowed to open until 11 pm.

A Cabinet meeting chaired by President Kagame on Wednesday, January 26, reviewed Covid-19 preventive guidelines and eased the tough measures that had been implemented to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

According to a communique from the meeting signed by the Prime Minister, Edouard Ngirente, social gatherings, festivities, meetings, and conferences are now allowed to take place with a limited number of people.

Public events that were previously suspended in December to fight the spread of the Omicron variant will resume, subject to approval by the Rwanda Development Board.

To access services such as public buses, motorcycles, churches, restaurants, markets, and other public places, people will require to show proof of being fully vaccinated.

“Penalties will be applied in case of non-compliance,” the communique states.

Public and private sector offices that had been urged to operate at no more than 30 per cent and 50 per cent capacity, respectively, are now allowed to have more employees coming to the workplace at 50 per cent and 75 per cent, respectively.

Arriving passengers are no longer required to quarantine, but will be required to present a Covid negative PCR test taken 72 hours prior to arrival in Rwanda and an additional PCR test taken on arrival. They are also required to take a rapid test three days after their arrival, all at their own cost.

The new measures, which come into effect on January 27, will remain in place for one month but may be reviewed when the need arises.

For the last two weeks, the infection rate in Rwanda has dropped from 6 per cent in December to the current 2 per cent. Daily recorded cases dropped from an average of 500 cases recorded per day to less than 200 cases.

As of Wednesday, the death toll in Rwanda was 1,434, with 17 deaths recorded during the last seven days. Five patients were in critical condition, according to the Ministry of Health data.

Rwanda has also urged residents to get fully vaccinated and also get booster shots.

So far, 6.9 million out of the 12.9 million population have been fully vaccinated. The target is to fully vaccinate 9.1 million people by June this year.

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