COVID-19: Over 100 arrested in bars drinking in Bugesera

On 7 February 2021 at 08:12

Rwanda National Police (RNP) has arrested 113 people in Nyamata Sector, Bugesera District where they were found in different bars drinking.

They were arrested on Saturday, February 6, in five hospitality establishments, including bars and motels.

Those arrested include nine people from Kigali, who had secured movement clearance apparently to go for varied essential services.

Also arrested during the Saturday afternoon operations are owners and managers of the hospitality facilities in question, who were found at the scene.

Some bars were operating behind closed doors.

Bars, including those operating in hotels and other hospitality establishments, are closed as part of the national measures to curb the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Innocent Karemera, the proprietor of Gahembe bar commonly known as Ku Gahembe is among those arrested.

"I have no much to say except regrets for operating a business which I very well know that we are supposed to be closed as directed by the government to prevent the spread of COVID-19. I have learnt my lesson," said Karemera.

It his Agahembe bar, Police and local authorities caught 35 people drinking, including five who had joined the group from Kigali.

The mayor of Bugesera, Richard Mutabazi warned owners of prohibited businesses against flouting the government measures meant to prevent further spread of the pandemic.

"This is exposing people to the virus intetionally and no one should see such serious violations are keep quiet," Mutabazi said.

RNP spokesperson, CP John Bosco Kabera said that this should be a lesson to others that action will be taken against anyone, who violates the directives.

"These people will spend 24 hours in an allocated centre, fined accordingly including further action to be taken against their businesses," CP Kabera said.

He further warned people, who misuse the movement clearance permit to engage in prohibited practices.

CP Kabera explained that in such circumstances, further action might be taken against individuals who secure a movement permit claiming to be going for essential services and instead indulge in other malpractices.

’There are some people, who secure a movement permit and use it to smuggle others from one place to another; this is a caution, movement permit is applied individually and cannot be used as a path for others," CP Kabera warned.