Ugandan President Museveni tests positive for COVID-19

Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni has tested positive for COVID-19, the Ministry of Health announced on Friday.

Museveni, 77, said he had been feeling unwell for a few days and had taken a COVID-19 test, which came back positive. He said he was isolating at his home in Nakasero and was receiving treatment.

“I have been very cautious with corona but recently I had to stop using face masks because they were giving me adverse reactions in the eyes and throat,” Museveni said in a tweet. “Therefore, I have secluded myself at Nakasero and have given the Prime Minister, Robinah Nabanjja, responsibility for today and tomorrow (Heroes’ Day in Luwero).”

Museveni said he had been experiencing mild symptoms, including a fever and a cough. He said he was confident that he would make a full recovery.

“Remember when I had vocal problems twice during the election? It is a component of the allergy. Thus, I have received the second forced leave in the 53 years since we began the battle against Idi Amin. Another occasion was when I had sinus issues and had to be inactive for a few days at Mweya,” he said.

Museveni is the first sitting African head of state to test positive for COVID-19. He is also the oldest person to test positive for the virus.

The announcement of Museveni’s diagnosis comes as Uganda is experiencing a surge in COVID-19 cases. The country has reported over 100,000 cases and over 3,000 deaths since the pandemic began.

Museveni’s diagnosis has raised concerns about the spread of the virus in Uganda. However, the government has said that it is taking steps to contain the virus, including increasing testing and contact tracing.

Museveni has been in power for over 35 years and is Africa’s longest-serving president. He is widely expected to run for re-election in 2026.

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Dennis Elnino

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