Posted: 1st July 2020

COVID-19 in the countries we work in overseas – update 16

At Signpost International we continue to work and communicate with all of our communities throughout the world during this global pandemic. We want to keep you up to date with the current Coronavirus situation in the countries and communities we work in.

At the time of publishing (3pm on Wednesday 1st July 2020) this is the current situation in the countries we work in.

Uganda

There are now 870 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Uganda and no confirmed cases in the communities we work in.

The World Bank has approved a $300 million budget to aid Uganda in their fight against Coronavirus. The money will be used to boost the government’s capacity to prevent, detect and treat COVID-19, protect the poor and vulnerable population, and support economic recovery. The World Bank said that in Uganda’s efforts to contain the spread of COVID-19 it had battered the country’s economy and was likely to send an extra 3.15 million citizens into poverty. Tony Thompson, World Bank Country Manager for Uganda said, “The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on the economy and livelihoods. This budget support operation will enable the government to provide vital services, social safety nets and a more robust shock-responsive system for the long term allowing the economy to recover faster.”

This week Uganda has also opened part of its border with the Democratic Republic of Congo to allow in thousands of refugees. At least 3,000 people fled their homes in May after inter-communal clashes in north-eastern Ituri province. But they were unable to cross into Uganda to seek safety as the country had closed its borders in March to control the spread of COVID-19. It has been agreed the refugees will be quarantined before being settled.

Tanzania

As we have previously shared the country’s government stopped releasing COVID-19 related statistics on 29th April however according to Tanzania’s Prime Minister there were 66 COVID-19 patients hospitalized in 10 regions across the country three weeks ago.

On Monday after three months of closures due to the pandemic children in Tanzania returned to school. The move made Tanzania the first country in East Africa to reopen schools. Pupils of all year groups returned to school wearing face masks.

The Philippines

There are now 38,511 confirmed cases of the virus with a death toll of 1,270 in the Philippines, with no confirmed cases in the community we work in. Last week the Philippines registered the fastest increase in new infections in the Western Pacific region over the previous fortnight, according to data from the World Health Organization. The spike has mostly occurred in the most populous metropolitan areas in the country, Manila (the capital) and Cebu City. In response to this President Duterte has retained strict lockdown in Cebu City and described it as a new coronavirus hot spot. Currently Manila along with the rest of the country continue in lighter quarantine.

Iloilo City’s capacity to test for COVID-19 was boosted this week by the private sector’s decision to open laboratories to support capabilities and to combat the pandemic.

Please do continue to pray for all of the Countries and communities we work in throughout the world.