COVID-19: Kenyans risk 6 months’ imprisonment for failure to wear face masks in public

Inspector General of police Hillary Nzioka Mutyambai. (Courtesy Photo/File)
By :
AT Reporter

NAIROBI, Kenya – The government has gazetted punitive legal actions that would be meted on individuals who will be found flouting safety measures aimed at arresting the spread of COVID-19.

According to the Legal notice no.50 of public health act cap. 242 on the restriction of movement of persons and related measures dated April 6, 2020, every person walking in a public place would be required to adhere to safety measures prescribed by the Ministry of Health or risk arrest and prosecution.”

The notice, further notes that every person who is in a public place during the restriction period shall maintain a physical distance of no less than one metre from the next person; and use a proper face mask that must cover the person’s mouth and nose.

Africa Tembelea understands that any person who commits an offence under these Rules shall, on conviction, be liable to a fine not exceeding twenty thousand shillings or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding six months or both.

However, Hillary Nzioka Mutyambai, Kenya’s Inspector General of police, said Thursday, April 9, that his officers were yet to be given orders to start enforcing the directive.

“As for now we are not enforcing it and nobody should be arrested for not wearing a mask. When we get the orders we will make it clear to the public,” said Mutyambai.

His sentiments came shortly after a section of Kenyans claimed they had been arrested by police officers after being found without a face mask.

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