Minister proposes tougher penalties for leaders violating COVID-19 preventive measures

On 14 December 2020 at 07:52

The Minister of Local Government (MINALOC), Prof Shyaka Anastase has proposed tougher punishments for leaders caught violating COVID-19 preventive measures over failure to lead by example.

The minister sounded the warning yesterday as he featured in a talk show to shed light on COVID-19 preventive measures following the gradual increase in new cases.

Shyaka said that sector executive secretaries, medical practitioners, business people and teachers are among other people often taken to stadiums for violating COVID-19 health guidelines.

“Whoever is caught violating guidelines should be held accountable. No one should be spared of punishment when caught in violation. If you are caught in a bar and taken to stadium along with others, you are also subject to equally pay imposed fines. The fines should even increase on account of misleading people,” he said.

Minister Shyaka revealed that a total of 40 people including sector and cell executive secretaries, leaders of village sub-units (amasibo) perceived as role models were registered among other people violating health guidelines over the past six months.

“If we consider teachers, agronomists, medical practitioners among other workers, the number can go up three or four times,” he said.

Shyaka urged Rwandans to strengthen COVID-19 preventive measures considering that one infected person can spread the virus to a large number.

Rwanda confirmed the first COVID-19 case on 14th March 2020. Since then, 6659 people were tested positive out of 667 894 sample tests of whom 5955 have recovered, 648 are active cases while 56 have succumbed to the virus.

Coronavirus symptoms include coughing, flu, and difficulty in breathing. The virus is said to be transmitted through the mucous membranes of the respiratory tract.

Rwandans are urged to adhere to COVID-19 health guidelines, washing hands frequently using soaps and safe water, wearing face masks and respecting social distancing.