Covid-19: Two men killed after defying Rwandan lockdown rules
Cape Town -Two men have been killed by Rwandan police for allegedly defying lockdown rules related to Covid-19.
Citing a statement from Rwanda’s national police spokesperson John Bosco Kabera, international news agency Bloomberg said the men in their twenties had attempted to “tussle” with police officers.
Rwanda announced a two-week lockdown on Monday in an attempt to promote social distancing as the country and the rest of the global community fight the pandemic.
Rwanda, with 41 confirmed cases of Covid-19, was the first African country to make the bold decision, followed by South Africa whose number of confirmed cases had soared to 709 by Wednesday.
South Africa’s lockdown will commence at midnight on Thursday.
Both Rwanda and South Africa have banned citizens from unnecessary movement and visits outside their homes. The only valid reasons are for essential services such as health, grocery shopping or banking.
The governments ordered employees in both the private and public sectors to work from home except for those providing essential services.
Shops and markets are to close except those selling food and hygiene products, as well as pharmacies and fuel retailers.
Rwanda and South Africa have also tightened travel restrictions to prohibit citizens from crossing borders as well as travelling by air.
Schools, tertiary institutions, sports facilities, cultural and worship centres or churches have also been shut down.
“(Vehicles) are not permitted to carry passengers but may offer delivery services. Other public transports, within the city, will only operate for essential movements and with at least one-metre distance between passengers,” the Rwandan government said in a statement.
South Africa's government said minibus taxis would only be allowed to transport essential service workers and those with permits to make necessary trips. Public transport in this instance will only be allowed to operate from 5 am to 9 am each day during the lockdown and again from 4 pm to 8 pm.
The government urged taxi operators to put measures in place and adhere to social distancing to curb the spread of the virus.
“All minibus taxis must be sanitised after every trip. All taxi ranks must be sanitized at regular intervals,” it said.
African News Agency/ANA