Egypt's interior ministry reports 79,217 violations since enforcing newly-issued face mask fines on Sunday

Ahram Online , Thursday 7 Jan 2021

The ministry said on Thursday that 17,710 face mask violations have been reported nationwide during the last 24 hours

File photo: Policemen following up on citizens
File photo: Policemen following up on citizens' commitment to wear face masks in Egypt amid coronavirus concerns

According to the Egyptian interior ministry's figures from Sunday till Thursday, 79,217 violations have been reported nationwide for not wearing protective face masks.

During the last 24 hours, the interior ministry said in a statement on Thursday, 17,710 violations have been reported against citizens who had not adhered to wearing masks nationwide.

Among the 17,710 violators, 17,161 have paid the recently enforced fine, while legal action has been taken against 549 citizens for not paying, the ministry said.

Egypt, which is currently facing the second wave of the pandemic, has been recently witnessing a rebound of daily infections after reporting low rates over the past months. 

In order to curb the spread of COVID-19, the cabinet has recently enforced a number of measures, including the imposition of an immediate EGP 50 fine starting Sunday for not wearing masks in closed public places, public transportation, as well as underground metro and railway stations.

The ministry's Thursday statement added that 633 violations have been recorded during the last 24 hours of shops not adhering to the closing times imposed by the cabinet.

A November decree by the cabinet stipulated that from the beginning of December, Cairo's commercial shops and centres are only allowed to operate from 7am to 11pm in the summer and from 7am till 10pm in the winter, while bazaars and restaurants can open from 5am to 1am in the summer and from 5am to 12am in the winter.

Moreover, restaurants and coffee shops not abiding by the coronavirus restrictions, which include a limited occupancy rate of 50 percent, will be closed for a week and fined EGP 4,000 ($252.5).

Concerning the working hours of workshops and crafts centres located inside residential areas, they are allowed to operate from 8am to 7pm in the summer and 8am to 6pm in the winter.

The ministry also said on Thursday that legal action has been taken against 207 cafes during the same period for violating precautionary measures by offering shisha (hookah), which was banned at entertainment venues since the government reopened restaurants and coffee shops in June.

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