Rwanda’s Cabinet issued a communique announcing that the face masks will no longer be mandatory, but still ‘strongly encouraged’ outdoors.
“Wearing face masks is no longer mandatory, however, people are encouraged to wear masks indoors,” said the communique issued by the Office of the Prime Minister.
The government’s decision to end the outdoor face mask mandate is based on an improved COVID-19 situation whereby the country has witnessed a fall in COVID-19 infections since the beginning of 2022.
However, the public is strongly urged to get frequently tested while continuing to observe preventive measures, the communique added.
The government also reminded the citizens and Rwanda residents that they must be fully vaccinated in order to access public places including public transport.
Fully vaccinated means having two doses and a booster shot when eligible.
Rwanda is among the few countries that have been able to vaccinate more than 60 percent of its population, overcoming the vaccine hesitancy seen on the continent.
A total of 9,028,849 people have received the first dose of COVID-19 vaccines while 8,494,713 people have received the second dose as of May 13.
At least 4,371,568 people had received the booster jab by yesterday, according to the Rwandan Ministry of Health’s daily update.