The duration for Kenyans to walk publicly, having no masks, is over. This is according to Inspector General of Police Hillary Mutyambai.
According to Mutyambai, anyone caught in the public without a mask as from Wednesday will be arrested. The IG warned Kenyans who have been taking the issue of wearing masks lightly.
Wearing of masks is among the adopted measures to curb the COVID-19 spread, according to the Health Ministry and the World Health Organization (WHO).
Speaking on Tuesday, Mr. Mutyambai stated that police would now be arresting anyone caught in public without a mask.
A few days ago, the Health CS gazetted some penalties for those who would go against the set regulations. The gazette notice stated that all users of vehicles, whether public or private, must put on masks, in addition to observing the policy of social distancing.
For anyone defying regulations, it will be a fine of Sh20,000 or a jail term of six months. The IG stated that Kenyans have had sufficient time to source for masks.
"Police officers have been asking Kenyans to wear face masks. We are now going to take another step to make sure the law is followed," noted IG Mutyambai.
Masks are reportedly ranked vital in the fight against COVID-19, in nations like China, Japan, South Korea, and European parts. WHO reports that droplets from infected persons may be passed out through sneezing, coughing, or talking.
The droplets may remain on air for some time, infecting anyone who inhales that air. This is why everyone should consider wearing masks, mostly when in public.
Businesses flocked with a lot of customers have also been warned against allowing people with no masks. Additionally, public concerns have been raised over availability.
Ordinary masks fetch like Sh70, with surgical ones going between Sh200 and Sh1,500. The unregulated business for masks has also raised concerns over the spread.
On many occasions, many are reportedly fitting several masks from the street sellers, and may not buy. By any chance, if they are infected, how many others will they infect?
Kenyans had initially urged the central and devolved governments to provide free masks before they start arresting those who did not have.