Police at Asante Mampong in the Ashanti Region have arrested 57 persons for not wearing face masks.
Police say people in the municipality continue to violate COVID-19 safety protocols despite the continuous sensitisation by authorities.
As Ghana’s COVID-19 cases continue to increase, the Asante Mampong Municipality has a total of 39 confirmed cases so far.
The Municipal Police Command has also intensified enforcement of the measures to get residents to comply.
The Asante Mampong Municipal Police Commander, Superintendent Stephen Boadu, told Citi News all 57 suspects will be arraigned today [Friday].
“We mounted a search at the Mampong Township and we picked 38 people; 26 males and 12 females. Yesterday, we continued the same operation and we picked up 19 people; five females and 14 males.”
“They have all been charged with walking without face masks… we are going to put them before the circuit court in Nsuta for the trial to begin. In fact, we intend to sustain this operation until when the disease has died out or most of the people within the community are complying,” he said.
People who fail to wear face masks in public risk a prison sentence of four to 10 years or a fine ranging GHS12,000 to GHS60,000, or both.
The new sanctions for not wearing face masks are contained in a new Executive Instrument (E.I. 164).
About the new E.I.
The new E.I. makes it mandatory for people to wear face masks, face shields or any other face covering that covers his or her nose and mouth completely when the person is in public or leaving or returning to his place of abode.
Police are also given authority to make random checks to ensure compliance.
According to paragraph 4(2) of E.I. 164, any person who fails to comply with the mandatory wearing of nose masks shall be punished in accordance with Section 6 of Act 1012.
Per Section 6 of Act 1012, “a person who fails to comply with the restrictions imposed under the Executive Instrument issued under subsection 1 of Section 2 commits an offence and is liable on summary conviction to a fine of not less than 1,000 penalty units (GHS12,000) and not more than 5,000 penalty units (GHS 60,000) or to a term of imprisonment not less than four years and not more than 10 years or to both.”