As part of measures to reduce community infections of COVID-19 in the Ashanti Region, the Ashanti Regional Police Command has started an enforcement exercise aimed at ensuring that every individual who steps out of their homes wear a nose mask.
The exercise according to the Ashanti Regional Police Public Relations Officer, ASP Godwin Ahianyo which started over the weekend will see Police personnel stationed at vantage points to ensure that residents moving around are in their nose masks.
ASP Godwin Ahianyo added that persons who refuse to wear the mask will be instructed to engage in community service.
“Ours is to educate, encourage and also somehow enforce the wearing of the nose mask as it is a directive issued by the Regional Security Council. We started it on Saturday and we are continuing. Ours is to educate, encourage and also somehow enforce the recalcitrant ones to wear them and so that is basically what we are doing. Until this whole thing ends or we see that every single person is wearing the nose mask we will not bring the exercise to an end. On Friday some persons who were recalcitrant were made to do some kind of community work; some were made to sweep while others cleared debris.”
The Ashanti Regional Security Council (REGSEC) last week instructed the police in the region to enforce the directive on the wearing of nose masks, especially on those accessing public areas.
Following the directive, the police last Friday began an exercise to enforce the directive.
Thus, People who fail to comply with the directive to wear nose masks in the Region will be made to undertake instant community service as punishment.
The exercise which was carried out mainly in the Kumasi metropolis, saw the arrest of about 30 people, mainly trotro mates.
They were made to sweep and pick litter from the streets for a maximum of 10 minutes before being released.
The police also used the opportunity to educate the public on the need to wear nose masks to protect themselves from contracting the virus and also spreading it.
Government considering arresting persons who refuse to wear nose masks – Health Minister
The Minister of Health, Kwaku Agyeman Manu says government is considering plans to arrest recalcitrant persons who refuse to adhere to basic guidelines in fighting COVID-19 such as wearing of face mask in public spaces.
A frustrated Agyeman Manu said such persons could face a three-month jail term for not adhering to safety protocols.
“All of us should become ambassadors to preach wherever we are that we should observe the basic rules or guidelines that have come out. They are not very difficult to do. So I don’t understand why some of us do not do these things.”
“We have been thinking about what next to do to enforce strict compliance of these basic guidelines. We are working on that and very soon, we will see the police arresting some of us who are becoming too recalcitrant and when you are jailed three months for not wearing a mask in public, probably, you will take a cue from that,” he said.
The Minister disclosed this today, Thursday, May 14, 2020, at the Information Ministry’s press briefing.