Significant lockdown easements introduced to Maldives

People drive along the ring road of Male' City. (Sun Photo/Fayaz Moosa)

National Emergency Operations Center (NEOC) has announced significant easements to the lockdown order on the capital Male' City. 

Speaking in a press conference tonight, NEOC spokesperson Mabrouq Azeez said that the lockdown order was being extended for 15 days along with significant easements.

Male’ City was placed under lockdown after April 15, when the first COVID-19 case was identified in the capital.

Easements introduced to Male' City: (Effective from July 1, 2020)

  • Residents of Male’ City will be permitted outdoors from 5:00 to 23:00.
  • Delivery services will be permitted until 23:00.
  • Café’ and Restaurants will be permitted to serve customers from 5:00 to 23:00, according to the Economic Ministry.
  • Groups of more than 30 individuals will be permitted if safety precautions are taken.
  • Sports activities will be permitted
  • Sports academies will be permitted to open for children above 12 years.
  • Government offices will remain closed for the next two days.
  • Banks will be open from 9:30 to 14:00.
  • Schools will be reopening for students above Grade 9.
  • High-Risk students and students with special needs are to be taught online.
  • Daycare centers and tuition centers to remain closed.
  • Guesthouses will be permitted to reopen

Easements that will be in effect starting from July 1 onwards include permitting restaurants and cafes in the capital to open during specific hours. The Economic Ministry had announced that shops, cafeterias, tea hotels restaurants, and shops in the Greater Male' area (Male', Vilimale', Hulhumale') will be permitted to reopen from 5:00 to 22:00. 

In tonight's presser, NEOC spokesperson Mabrouq Azeez, however, said that cafes and restaurants as well as shops will be permitted to serve customers from 9:00 to 22:00.

“In-dining services in café’s, when customers can be served inside the cafés or restaurants, have been permitted from 9:00 to 22:00.” Said Mabrouq.

Mabrouq also said that delivery services could be continued till 23:00.

No prior permits required to travel to Male'

Starting from June 1 onwards, people from other residential islands of the country will be able to travel to the capital Male’ City without obtaining any prior permits. However, travelers from Male’ City to other islands will still need to undergo the set procedure.

Islamic Ministry of the Maldives also announced tonight that congregational prayers will be permitted in the Maldives starting from the Maghrib prayers tomorrow night.

NEOC stressed that the danger of the virus had still not fully subsided from the Maldives and requested civilians to take caution even with the introduction of the easements.

Maldives has so far confirmed 2,361 cases of COVID-19