Individuals without masks in public to be fined USD 65

Health Emergency Operation Centre (HEOC) has stated individuals without masks in public would be fined USD 65, starting from August 1.

Speaking at a press conference, Spokesperson of the HEOC Dr. Nazla Rafeeq noted wearing masks in public has now been made mandatory in the Greater Male' Region. The spokesperson said the measure was imposed as it was deemed necessary to control the growing number of COVID-19 cases reported on a daily basis. She noted Maldives Police Service (MPS) will be monitoring compliance to the regulations, adding a fine of USD 65 will be handed to anybody in public without a mask.

Speaking further, the spokesperson said the eased restrictions will be monitored more closely from now, as the number of Maldivians contracting COVID-19 is increasing by the day. As such, she noted action will be taken on individuals found outside between 2300hrs and 0500hrs without an essential purpose. She added special inspections will be carried out to ensure public service providers comply with the safety standards set by the Health Protection Agency (HPA).

The Maldives has been in a State of Public Health Emergency since March 12 following the detection of the first COVID-19 cases on March 7. A lockdown was imposed on April 15 after a community spread was detected in the Greater Male' Region.

The restrictions were lifted on July 1 following a decrease in COVID-19 cases reported daily. However, COVID-19 cases have once again been on the rise after the restrictions were lifted.