68 arrested for flouting COVID-19 directives

On 16 April 2021 at 06:05

Rwanda National Police (RNP), on Wednesday April 14, caught 68 people in two separate homes in Rutsiro and Ngororero districts holding gatherings, which are prohibited under the national directives to contain the COVID-19 pandemic.

At least 40 people were found congregating in the house of one Velonique Nyiramazimwe ,55, located in Bitare Village, Kabujenje Cell of Kivumu Sector, Rutsiro District.

The worshippers include 30 people, who came from Rubavu District and 10 from Rutsiro District.

The believers, it is said, came from different churches in Rubavu and Rutsiro districts and gathered in the house of Nyiramazimwe to pray for one of their members whom they alleged was possessed by evil spirits.

Another group of 28 violators was found at a cinema hall of one Yunusu Bihoyiki, 35, watching football in Nyanza Village, Kabaya Cell, Kabaya Sector in Ngororero District.

The Executive Secretary for Kabaya Sector, Simon Ndayisenga warned of severe consequences to anyone caught undermining the national COVID-19 prevention directives.

"We are still seeing new infections and over 300 have died; it’s so unfortunate that despite these threats, there are people who can go against the directives putting their lives, families and communities at risks," Ndayisenga said.

"We should all be concerned by self protection to prevent the spread or infecting others by avoiding such gatherings because you cannot know who is infected or not."

The Western Region Police Spokesperson, Chief Inspector of Police (CIP) Bonaventure Twizere Karekezi, said the two separate prohibited gatherings were reported by concerned local residents.

’’Police and local leaders responded to the calls from residents on many people who were gathered in the cinema hall of Yunusu Bihoyiki watching Uefa champions league. Some of them managed to escape but 28 were arrested in the process," CIP Karekezi said.

"First, such gatherings are prohibited, they had no face mask, no hand washing facilities and were congested disregarding social distancing," he added.

The Western region Spokesperson reminded the public that gatherings are prohibited and guidelines must be followed without exception including religious services which must be held in allowed places of worship and always complying with Covid-19 preventive measures.

He thanked residents who share information with security organs and encouraged continued partnership against such violations.