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Police revise strategy for Easter for COVID safety

The Police Service has modified its enforcement strategy for religious activities during Easter.

It said churches, mosques and religious bodies are expected to hold services not beyond two hours, implementing a mandatory one-metre-rule of social distancing between congregants.

A statement signed by Head of Public Affairs, Supt. Sheila Abayie-Buckman, charged religious bodies to ensure that each congregant wears a mask at all times, adding that hand washing facilities and alcohol-based sanitisers must be provided for all persons.

“Religious bodies are also to maintain a register of names and contact details of all congregants, and ensure that the place of worship has fresh air instead of depending on air conditioners,” said the statement.

An earlier release reminded religious bodies to hold services not beyond two hours for 100 participants maximum, observing all other COVID-19 protocols.

It prohibited conventions, crusades, pilgrimages and large physical gatherings such as carnivals, festivals, beach and amusement events.

The police advice said the hosting of any carnival, festival, beach gathering, street dances, procession, parades will be illegal, adding that nightclubs cinemas and movie houses are also banned from opening.

The wide-ranging directive said “closed room” bars or pubs, including those in hotels, remain illegal.

However, open air drinking spots may operate provided that they observe all other COVID-19 protocols.

Operators of tourist sites and attractions may open to the public, provided they ensure the wearing of face masks, ensure social distancing and enhanced hygiene by all patrons.

The statement reminded the public that it is illegal to hold funerals, adding that private burials may be held with a maximum of twenty-five people, if held outside the church or religious facility.

For church or religious burial services, the maximum number of participants should be hundred.

It said certain facilities at the Police Hospital would be closed within the period, to make way for fumigation by the Ghana Health Service.

It therefore appealled to health facilities in the Greater Accra region to accept health issues or emergencies which would have otherwise been sent to the Police Hospital by Police Officers or patriotic citizens

In all cases, the COVID-19 protocols are expected to be observed and the duration shall be two hours maximum.

Regarding road safety, the statement said the police and its partners would be present at mapped out traffic congestion and accident-prone areas.

The Police Service gave out its hotlines as follows:

WhatsApp- 0206639121 (videos& pictures)

Road Policing Numbers- 0550323323, 0275000156

Emergency- 18555, 191, 112

In cases of emergency crime situations, the telephone numbers to contact are 0550323323 or 0275000156 and Toll-Free numbers 18555, 191 or 112. 9.

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