The Rwandan government on Thursday announced that it was easing the current nationwide lockdown, one of the measures it put in place on March 17 to check the spread of coronavirus pandemic.
A cabinet meeting chaired by President Paul Kagame resolved to ease the restrictions effective May 4, but with some exceptions and restrictions, including adherence to health guidelines while bars, churches and schools will remain closed – the latter until September at the earliest.
The new guidelines will be reviewed after 15 days upon a health assessment.
“Public and private businesses will resume with essential staff while other employees continue working from home,” Prime Minister Edouard Ngirete said in a statement.
Markets will open for essential vendors not exceeding 50 percent of registered traders while the manufacturing and construction sectors were also allowed to open for only essential workers.
“Public buses will be operational in Kigali but operators are required to ensure that passengers maintain social distancing and only passengers with facemasks will be allowed on-board,” the statement added.
However, private and public transport will only be restricted to Kigali, meaning no motorists will be allowed to commute upcountry or vice versa until further notice – except for those transporting essential services such as medicines or patients, and farm produce.
The decision, however, comes as cases of Covid-19 continue to rise in the central African country.