In the evening of Wednesday, September 2, at around 6pm, 19 people were found gathered at the bar drinking beer, according to the Executive secretary of Gisozi sector, Providence Musasangohe. Not only were they drinking beer, they were also seated very close to each other. Additionally, this was the second time the bar owner was caught in such illegalities.
“This is not the first time that this bar has been caught violating COVID-19 prevention measures. What is next is for the owner to pay a double fine for recidivism because they were warned the previous time. People who were drinking at the bar will also be fined,” Musasangohe said.
She also noted that people should understand that when people take alcohol, there is a higher risk for them to get closer and touch each other, or even drink from the same bottle. All these accelerate the spread of the Coronavirus.
The bar owner, Innocent Urimubabo told the media that he regrets to have been influenced by his clients’ demands to serve alcohol.
“I had changed the bar posters to ‘restaurant’, and we spent some time without serving alcohol. But yesterday (Wednesday), people were having alcohol. That is when I was caught red-handed by the authorities,” Urimubabo narrated.
He also advised owners of other hospitality establishments to not fall in the same trap of violating the COVID-19 prevention measures.
The government recently ordered the closure of all bars, including those operating in restaurants and hotels.
Rwanda National Police (RNP) spokesperson, Commissioner of Police (CP) John Bosco Kabera gave a fresh warning to all members of the public against COVID-19 prevention measures violations.
“The virus is still around and some Rwandans have succumbed to it. Violating measures put in place to save lives is something we cannot tolerate, and whoever fails to abide by the directives will face immediate consequences.”
The August 31 directives issued by City of Kigali on the penalization of people, who violate COVID-19 prevention measures stipulate that whoever will be found operating a bar business in their hospitality establishments, homes, supermarkets, and other places will pay a fine of Rwf150,000 and their businesses closed for at least a month but not more than three months.
The City directives also provide that any client caught in these establishments drinking also face a fine of Rwf25,000, and taken to allocated centres for at least 24 hours, where they are enlightened on the pandemic of COVID-19 and prevention measures.