Rwanda extends lockdown to April 30 as COVID-19 cases hit 143

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The Rwanda government has extended the country’s lockdown to April 30, as the number of confirmed coronavirus cases continue to rise.

Rwanda President Paul Kagame leading a cabient Meeting on April 17

Following a cabinet meeting held on Friday, the government agreed to extend the lockdown for a second time by 11 days.

The lockdown was expected to end on April 19.

“Unnecessary movements and visits outside the home are not permitted, except for essential services such as healthcare, food shopping, financial services and for the personnel performing such services as well as other key national projects,” reads part of the communique.

Under the lockdown, people are obliged not to make unnecessary movements outside of their homes.

Businesses across the country are also closed except for those dealing in essential commodities like fuel, food items and medicine.

Services like banks and telecommunication companies are also considered essential and remain in operation.

The lockdown extension came as the Ministry of Health announced five newCOVID-19 cases on Friday, raising the country’s confirmed cases to 143.

The ministry also announced that within 24 hours, there had been five new recoveries that brought the number of patients discharged from designated treatment facilities to 65.

No death has been registered since the first case was confirmed in the country over a month ago.

During the lockdown, Rwanda’s borders are also closed except for goods and cargo as well as returning citizens and legal residents who will be subject to a mandatory 14-day quarantine at designated locations.

“Shops and markets will remain closed, except those selling food, medicine (pharmacies), hygiene and cleaning products, fuel, and other essential items,” the cabinet memo reads.

President Paul Kagame is said to have thanked Rwandans for continued solidarity and for observing measures in place to slow the spread of COVID-19, according to a statement signed by Prime Minister Edouard Ngirente.

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