Joho donates masks for police to give people instead of arresting them

Joho donates masks for police to give people instead of arresting them
Mombasa Governor Ali Hassan Joho during donation of masks to Inspector General of Police Hilary Mutyambai. PHOTO| COURTESY

Mombasa Governor Ali Hassan Joho has donated thousands of face masks to the National Police Service to help in combating the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in the country.

The masks were handed over to Inspector General of Police Hilary Mutyambai on Wednesday in Mombasa and will be distributed to members of public at roadblocks instead of arresting them when found without one.

Joho emphasized on the need for everyone to acquire a mask for their own safety as the coronavirus cases in the country continue to rise.

“We are producing thousands and thousands of masks everyday here in the county of Mombasa. So anytime your officers would need masks you are welcome to receive them from us…  We have agreed that anyone who drives through a roadblock without a mask will be given one,” said Joho, in a press briefing with Mutyambai.

The Governor added: “I appeal to every citizen… wear a mask. Wear a mask or you will be prosecuted… But most importantly understand that the mask is for your own safety.”

The IG thanked Governor Joho for the donation of face masks which he said exceeded the number of police officers in the country, assuring that the masks would also be given to members of public.

“I know that there are those people who cannot afford to buy a mask. But as the police service we are taking this opportunity to join hands with the public in combating this virus…

“Instead of using force we shall remind you to wear a mask and we shall provide one for you. This will be to emphasize that you have not committed a crime but we are enforcing prevention measures against the coronavirus pandemic,” said Mutyambai.

Meanwhile the Inspector General of Police reiterated that putting on a mask to prevent the spread of the coronavirus in the country is now compulsory in line with the gazette notice issued by the Office of the Attorney General on April 6, 2020.

According to the gazette notice, failure to wear a face mask is punishable by a fine of Ksh.20,000 or six-year jail term or both.

The gazette notice further directed that every organization, business entity, trader or vendor whether in a market or enclosed premises must provide either water and soap to customers or an alcohol-based sanitizer approved by the Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS).

Business entities are also required to put in place measures that ensure customers maintain a distance of no less than one-metre is maintained between persons accessing the premises.

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Story By Benjamin Muriuki
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