Uganda’s ministry of health on Sunday warned of social media reports alleging strong immunity among Ugandans and other Africans against COVID-19, saying such rumors are causing laxity in the fight against the pandemic.
Diana Atwine, permanent secretary of the ministry of health, said in a tweet that the public should disregard such unproven theories, which pose a serious risk of undermining the country’s efforts to contain the novel coronavirus outbreak.
“We have heard rumours of herd immunity among Ugandans and this is causing laxity,” said Atwine.
“However, my opinion is that we should not dwell so much on such unproven theories because we risk impacts of mass infections. We continue to see the devastation it has caused in other countries,” she said.
The Uganda Communications Commission (UCC), the state-owned communication regulatory body, in March vowed to crack down on individuals who circulate misleading videos, news and advice on social media concerning COVID-19.
Misleading reports could incite violence, cause financial turmoil and endanger people’s lives, according to the UCC, adding that suspects shall be prosecuted under the penal laws of Uganda.
So far, Uganda has 88 confirmed cases of COVID-19, with 52 recoveries.