Police arrest scores for not wearing facemasks in Lagos - AMEBO ONLINE NEWSPAPER


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Police arrest scores for not wearing facemasks in Lagos

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The Lagos Police Command has arrested many people for not wearing facemasks as directed by the Federal Government .
Commissioner of Police (CP)Hakeem Odumosu who confirmed the arrest said he would not be able to say the actual number of persons arrested, “but I know that many people have been arrested and many more will be arrested for not wearing facemasks, especially transporters and other motorists who violate the directives of the government.”

CP Odumosu who spoke after meeting with Area Commanders and principal officers of departments at Police Officers Wives Association Secretariats (POWA), Ikeja, said: “We just had a security meeting, we just analysed the presidential directive, and the state government regulations in line with the directive, and we are the leading agency in enforcing this directive. The challenge for us now is to put our heads together to have a common way of enforcing the directive.

“It should not be difficult to enforce the new transport regulation in the state because the state government has gone further to bring in all the transport units in the state; they are to do self enforcement for their members, and the state government is also doing advocacy. Self compliance still remains the best, so the Lagos State Transport Management Agency (LASTMA ) officials, Neighbourhood, the park and monitoring officials of the Lagos state government, that is the agency that have the powers to know what happens in the Park, National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) and Road Transport Employers’ Association of Nigeria (RETEAN), where all transporters belong, they have accepted they are going to enforce this.

Once they comply, those who refuse, they will know the means of punshing themselves. With that, we are expecting voluntary compliance.

“Those arrested so far, are those who did not put on the face mask. Either the passenger, driver or conductor. Anyone not putting facemasks will be arrested.
Anyone carrying more than the stipulated number of passengers without social distancing, will be stopped. The operatives on enforcement will just ask the excess passenger to get down and the bus will continue it’s journey with the expected number of passengers. Before any arrest can be made, it will be after 8pm. we have gone round the city as early as 5am, all the barricades have been removed and no police is stopping anyone anywhere. Before we will start stopping, it will be 8pm.

“By and large, the enforcement is a persuasive one, we persuade people. To be realistic, all what we are avoiding is for people not to have Coronavirus, and it is people. We need to talk more to people’s conscience, let them know that this thing goes beyond doubting it does not exist. We saw some banks where people queued to use the ATM and gain access into the bank, you know human beings. Some of them have exhausted their food and money during the total lockdown, we expected that. It is human nature, so we will be going round to persuade them. We have also told bank officers to bring their security operatives out, because the people gathered are their customers, they are making money from them. Let them come out and space them. We spoke with bank managers on the need to space and I am sure by the first one week, people will adjust to it. Fortunately, Lagos state government said after two weeks, they will review it, and that gives a ray of hope. So if we voluntarily comply, there may not be any enforcement.

“The curfew will be enforced everywhere, this time, police will not arrest you for vehicle particulars, but for refusing to put on the facemasks, not keeping social distance. Okada activities have also been suspended. Since we started the lockdown, we have not had any case of police brutality in Lagos, because we are using persuasive enforcement, and we will continue on that”.

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