All hail Senegal, the new African soccer champions, Museveni allows boda bodas to operate, Kagame, Kenyatta meet as government moots law to jail anti-vaxxers

All praises this past weekend are on Senegal’s national football coach Aliou Cisse and striker Sadio Mane. Cisse  who is being credited for not just leading the country to its first African Cup championship, but also for turning the Senegalese into the best team on the continent. News sources indicate that before 2015 when Cisse took the mantle, Senegal had last played in both the World Cup and the AFCON finals in 2002. “Since taking over the Senegal job in 2015, Aliou Cisse has led Senegal in 17 AFCON games. He’s only lost to two countries, Algeria and Cameroon. Both those countries were eventually the winners of the competition,” reads a post on Latest Football News and Gossip, a Facebook page dedicated to sports reporting. It adds; “Senegal have reached the AFCON final three times in their history. Once was under the leadership of Aliou Cisse and the other two are under his management.”

Celebrations were high Sunday evening across Dakar and in most of Africa after Senegal claimed their first AFCON title in a penalty shoot-out, beating seven-time winners Egypt. Egyptian goalkeeper Mohamed Abo Gabal helped the team into the shootout at the Stade d’Olembe but could only save one shootout kick which wasn’t enough. Mane made history for Senegal in Cameroon’s Yaounde, erasing the memories of the team’s 2019 failure when they lost the final to Algeria.

President Yoweri Museveni on Sunday lifted the 6pm curfew restrictions imposed on boda bodas (motorcycle taxis) as one of the means to stop further spread of COVID-19. While presiding over the Uganda People’s Defense Forces (UPDF) Tarehe Sita celebrations at Malukhu grounds in Mbale city, Museveni ordered that boda bodas can resume operating normally starting Monday February 7.

Besides Covid-19 restrictions, Mr Museveni has indicated that his government was aware that some boda boda riders were involved in crime especially at night. He stated Sunday, that the government would handle them using different measures like introducing digital monitors that will help in tracking motorcycles and vehicles.

Meanwhile government last week tabled a Bill before Parliament proposing that persons who fail to comply with a requirement for vaccination to be fined up to Shs 4 million or face a prison sentence of up to six months. The Bill proposes that in the event of the occurrence or outbreak of any disease that requires vaccination or revaccination for residents, a local government council shall issue a public notice requesting all persons to undergo inspection, vaccination and revaccination. The same penalty is proposed for a parent or guardian who fails to present their child for vaccination within 12 months from birth.

President Yoweri Museveni on Saturday commissioned a $15 million Kinyara Industrial Sugar Refinery plant in Masindi district. The refinery is the first in East Africa and will produce 60,000 metric tons of industrial white sugar annually, consuming about 70,000 metric tons of mill brown sugar as raw material. While commissioning the factory Museveni stated that once production increases, Uganda’s refined sugar will have a ready market both locally and throughout East Africa whose demand for industrial sugar is 150,000 metric tons. “I will negotiate with these East African countries to buy our industrial sugar. And for us here we’re going to put a tax as soon as possible on the imported industrial sugar,” Museveni stated, assuring Ugandans of a market for their surplus sugar amounting to 220,000 metric tons out of the 600,000 metric tons produced annually as local consumption remains at 380,000 metric tons.

Meanwhile the UPDF have confirmed that ADF rebels attacked a joint Uganda-DRC Force but were repulsed. A tweet from former UPDF spokerperson Colonel Paddy Ankunda states: “On 3rd Feb 2022, ADF rebels attacked FARDC detach in Nobili, a town near Ug border town of Bundibugyo. The FARDC forces were quickly reinforced by the UPDF who came in time and repulsed the rebels. UPDF has now deployed there permanently. Gen Kayanja visited the area.”

Efforts to strengthen the cooperation between the East African Community countries were boosted last week as Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta met with Rwanda’s Paul Kagame in Kigali. The meeting, which comes days after President Kagame reopened the border of Uganda and Rwanda, was brought to light by Uganda’s Land Forces Commander Gen Muhoozi Kainerugaba. He tweeted; “My uncle and my big brother meeting. I’m extremely happy! Our East African family is coming back together!! East Africa, including our brothers and sisters in DRC, shall be one country one day!!”

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