Addu City bans public gatherings, limits shop and café hours

Addu City Council headquarters. (Sun Photo/Fayaz Moosa)

Addu City Council, on Wednesday, announced restrictive measures on the city to prevent a virus outbreak, including a ban on public gatherings, and limiting opening hours of shops, cafes and other service centers.


According to the council, the ban on public gatherings will be in effect immediately, for the duration of the 30-day state of public health emergency which was declared in Maldives on March 12.

It has ordered the closure of all public parks, picnic areas, swimming tracks, sports centers, football field, campaign hubs, and other open areas.

The residents of the city have also been warned against gathering outside to play cards, and gathering at harbors and causeways for recreational fishing.

Restaurants and cafes have been instructed not to have seating areas out in the streets.


The council has ordered for all service centers, with the exception of health centers and pharmacies, to be closed at night.

Shops, and cafes and restaurants have been ordered to limit their hours from 6 am to 6 pm.

Cafes and restaurants have the option of providing delivery services from 6 pm to 10 pm, but need to apply for a permit from the district office.

24/7 shops and cafes, if they wish to extend their hours beyond the new hours, may apply for a special permit from the district office.

The council has also ordered additional measures on food service providers.

As such, food carts must now have a hand washing system which is acceptable, and they will no longer be allowed to sell shorteats, maskaashi, and coffee prepared at the food cart itself.

Food carts will also not be allowed to have seating areas, and will only be allowed to sell products they have a permit for.

Furthermore, food carts, cafes and restaurants have been instructed to offer areca nuts and beetle leaves in sealed packets.   


The council said it will begin disinfecting the streets of the city at 8 am on Friday, March 27, and has instructed fish vendors and other unlicensed street vendors to cease their business, until instructed otherwise.