50 more businesses closed for COVID-19 safety guideline violations

Health Protection Agency (HPA) conducts a mass inspection of cafés and restaurants, shops, gyms and fitness centers, salons and markets on July 29, 2020. (Sun Photo/Fayaz Moosa)

Health Protection Agency (HPA) announced on Thursday that it has ordered the temporary closure of 50 more business establishments in the capital for violation of the safety guidelines issued by the agency in response to the coronavirus outbreak.

HPA initiated a mass inspection of cafés and restaurants, shops, gyms and fitness centers, salons and markets in the greater Male’ region last Wednesday, a follow-up to a mass inspection conducted earlier this July.

The agency inspected 57 establishments on Wednesday, following which it closed down 27 business establishments, which include 17 cafes and restaurants, nine shops and one hair salon, for violation of the safety guidelines.

HPA has announced that the agency inspected 99 more business establishments this Thursday, following which it temporarily closed down 50 more business establishments.

The business establishments closed down this Thursday includes 24 shops, 22 cafes and restaurants, and four hair salons.

The follow-up mass inspection comes amid a surge in coronavirus cases with the relaxation of the lockdown earlier this July. An increasing number of new coronavirus cases are unlinked to existing clusters, which health authorities warn indicates a wide community spread.

Mask while out in public in the greater Male’ region – the epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak in Maldives – is now mandatory.

Maldives recorded 152 new cases this Thursday, marking the biggest single-day surge of coronavirus cases to be recorded since the community spread began in the country.

142 of the new cases were identified from the greater Male’ region, while the remaining 10 were identified from the atolls; the nine people from H. A. Kelaa linked with the Savaari Boat case and one individual in home quarantine in B. Kamadhoo.

Maldives now has 3,719 confirmed coronavirus cases. 2,568 patients have since recovered, while 16 have died from complications. The latest fatality was recorded earlier this Thursday.