Speaker of Parliament Rebecca Kadaga has broken silence —revealing to Members of Parliament after a colleague who contracted the coronavirus.
The Speaker of Parliament who was chairing a plenary session on Wednesday after reports that Kiryandongo District Woman Member of Parliament, Hellen Kahunde, had tested positive for coronavirus.
Speaker Kadaga has since ordered mandatory testing for all MPs and Parliament staff starting Thursday, 16 July 2020.
“Some time back the Members requested that the Ministry of Health organizes mass screening for COVID-19 and I am glad to announce that they have now completed screening the cabinet members and starting tomorrow, we should be able to do the screening here starting with the MPs then the staff,” Kadaga said, adding that the MPs will be clustered to avoid congestion at the Parliament Medical facility.
MP Kahunde who is a COVID-19 Parliamentary Taskforce member was among the three coronavirus cases reported on Wednesday by the Ministry of Health.
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Kadaga said responsible Parliament groups will issue a statement on the MPs’ health. The Members of the taskforce have been traversing all the border districts including the red spot of Elegu Border in Amuru district.
This rules out the the comments by a senior official from the Clerk’s Office who claimed that the office was not aware of any Covid-19 case among the MPs or members of staff.
The official, however, said that since medical matters are a private affair, they would not know unless the affected publicly disclose their status.
The official said it was possible for a legislator to privately undergo tests and not disclose, and as such, Parliament may not know of such cases.
“If true, it would be a matter of great concern, but as of now, there is no report made to us of any case,” the official said.
The official added they have been ensuring that the regulations put in place to avoid the spread of the virus to Parliament are strictly followed, revealing that they had been regularly disinfecting the institution’s critical areas and committee rooms and offices.