COVID-19: Police Issues Fresh Warning to Motorists Defying the Curfew

CP John Bosco Kabera, Police Spokesperson

Rwanda National Police (RNP) has compiled a new list of motorists, who violated the curfew, undermined instructions by officers enforcing the curfew to go to designated centres, but instead they drove or rode away.

The new list involves 72 motorists, all in City of Kigali, who violated the curfew between 16th and 26th of July.

It comes two weeks after the first list of 498 motorists violated the curfew since April and disregarded Police instructions to park at designated areas for the remainder of curfew hours.

Only 203 motorists on the previous published list of violators responded as per the notice, which required all to report to Police by Friday, July 24.

RNP spokesperson, Commissioner of Police (CP) John Bosco Kabera warned everyone, who violates the directives and worse still disregard instructions by Police officers on duty, that they will be located and penalized accordingly.

“When you violate the directives and the curfew in particular, abide, go where you are told to go; running away will not help because you have left behind your particulars making it easier to locate you or your automobile,” CP Kabera said.

RNP, early this week, outlined new measures to ensure compliance and easy identification of errant violators.

Among the measures is digital registration of all violators so as to track their violation records. This informs serious actions in case of recidivism; reporting violators to their employers for further penalties. As for those moving without identifications, proper action will be taken to ensure their particulars are clearly known and digitally recorded.

CP Kabera said: “When they tell you to go to the stadium or any allocated centre, you are not being arrested; like we have said before, these are wide spaces to control movements during curfew hours but also to allow social distancing.”

He advised all those whose names are on the published lists of violators, to voluntarily come forward.

“If you don’t come forward voluntarily, further actions will be taken against you,” he warned.

Unnecessary gatherings

The spokesperson observed that most violations are witnessed in weekends, in most cases by people from unnecessary gatherings such as outings, home parties and birthday events.

The recent assessment on the level of compliance with the directives in the last four months, indicated serious violations related to compulsory wearing of facemask when in public, curfew and operating services that are still closed or unauthorised like bars, prayers as well prohibited movements and gatherings.

These violations were identified as major risks for COVID-19 infections.

“Be in the right place at the right time doing the right thing; home events are prohibited, bars are still closed, authorised religious gatherings must adhere to the safety guidelines otherwise their services will be suspended again,” CP Kabera emphasized.

He appealed to religious leaders to be the voice for the people to adhere to the directives, recommended safety and hygiene practices.

He further advised against handshakes and hugging practices, which transfer the virus from one person to another.

“Stay safe, abide by the directives and recommended safety practices, those in areas that are still under lockdown should stay there and avoid unnecessary movements for their safety and to prevent spreading the virus. Maximum compliance is the remedy to COVID-19, which has no antidote at the moment.”




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