COVID-19: Police calls for compliance during festive celebrations

On 25 December 2020 at 10:05

As we usher into the festive season, Rwanda National Police (RNP) has reminded the general public to enjoy responsibly in compliance with the Government directives meant to prevent further spread of COVID-19.

RNP spokesperson, Commissioner of Police (CP) John Bosco Kabera said that as Rwanda, like the rest of the world, is still faced with the deadly COVID-19, it requires changing attitude and actions in the festive season celebrations.

“As you start or plan for the festive celebrations, remember that the pandemic of COVID-19 is still in our midst; we are seeing many daily infections and people are still dying. As we have seen, the virus affects and kills all age groups and it is spread by the people,” CP Kabera said.

On December 23, the Ministry of Health reported 87 new COVID-19 infections, bringing the number of cases still active to 1369. A total of 66 COVID-19 related deaths have so far been recorded in Rwanda.

“The situation demands from us all to change our festive celebration lifestyles in line with the health guidelines for everyone’s safety. Avoid unnecessary movements, abide by the health guidelines if you have to move. The guidelines include wearing facemask properly covering the nose and mouth, washing or sanitizing your hands regularly, social distance, avoiding the tradition of hugging or shaking hands, and in case of celebrations of any kind, do it at your home with internal family members; don’t invite other people from outside.”

According to the spokesperson, Police and other entities in local government, health, community policing groups and the general public are working together to ensure maximum compliance with the national health guidelines and for the violators to be penalized accordingly.

CP Kabera said: “Everyone should be home by 8pm. For this to be possible you should plan ahead, anticipate the time your activities will take so that by 8pm you’ll be home already; prioritize what’s important and do it on time so that 8pm won’t find you on the road; make sure any trip you take allows you to be able to reach your home before 8pm; we all don’t have to use the same routes when there are alternative routes you can use to avoid traffic jam; If you use public transport, make sure you get to the bus park early so that you can avoid overcrowding.”

Movements in Musanze District are prohibited between 7pm and 4am.

He further warned against holding house parties, operating bars or relocating them into homes.

Road safety

CP Kabera further advised against movements which can lead to further spread of the pandemic.

At least 109 new infections were also reported on December 22, with cases registered in City of Kigali and other 15 districts including six out of seven districts of the Eastern Province. One COVID-19 related death was reported on the same day.

He, however, called upon motorists to respect traffic rules and regulations such as regulating speed as well as adhering to COVID-19 preventive measures.

Public transport vehicles are required to operate at 50 percent capacity in compliance with COVID-19 prevention measures.

CP Kabera further reminded organizers of religious services that places of worship operate once a week with no more than 50 percent of maximum occupancy, except in Musanze where attendance is at 30 percent maximum occupancy.