Rwandan police arrest 35,000 people for flouting COVID-19 preventive measures

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About 35,000 people have been arrested in different parts of Rwanda over the last four days since the announcement of new measures to contain further spread of COVID-19 in the country, the police said Monday.

The number is “so huge” compared to previous incidents when about 11,000 people were arrested in one week for violating COVID-19 preventive measures, said John Bosco Kabera, police spokesperson in a live talk with Rwanda Television about the progress made by the police to ensure citizen adherence to new measures.

The arrestees included those motorists who violated curfew time, those who were selling alcohol from their homes, or operating bars, sauna and massage parlors, and people visiting infected friends and relatives in isolation, said Kabera. He warned that anyone who contravenes the lockdown regulations will be found guilty of a criminal offence and be punished by relevant laws.

The Rwandan government announced last Wednesday that movements between the capital city Kigali and the rest of the country will be prohibited except for essential services and goods transportation, as a response to the recent rise of COVID-19 infections.

As of Sunday evening, Rwanda registered a total of 36,627 COVID-19 cases with 27,090 recoveries and 420 deaths from the disease.

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