Egypt’s government to reinforce LE4,000 fine against unmasked riders, employees, shoppers

Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly on Tuesday said that authorities will become stricter in reinforcing the LE4,000 fine against unmasked riders, employees and shoppers.

During a video conference meeting with Egypt’s Higher Committee for Coronavirus Crisis Management, Madbouly warned that the government may take hard preemptive measures in the case of noncompliance, which will affect the economic conditions of several classes.

Several countries have imposed full lockdown measures following a second outbreak of the virus in October, he pointed out.

Authorities across Egypt began enforcing the ministerial decree ordering people to wear face masks in public in May.

Most residents in Cairo committed to wearing masks out in the streets and in shopping centers and establishments, while those without any were barred from entering supermarkets.

The administration at various shopping centers also began measuring body temperatures before allowing people to enter, while authorities in Real Estate registration and unions prevented anyone without masks from entering.

Police established traffic patrols nationwide at bus and mini-bus stations to monitor the abidance of the face mask rule among passengers.

Months later, one will see a different story when walking the streets of Cairo.

During the meeting, Madboudly asked the public to comply with the mask mandate, and to practice social distancing.

Egypt’s Cabinet will release on Wednesday new regulations that will dictate the closing times of commercial and industrial shops, restaurants, and cafes for the first time in four decades, Cabinet Spokesperson Nader Saad confirmed.

It will be strictly imposed on violators who fail to wear masks in enclosed places and on public transportation like taxis and microbuses, Saad said, adding that private cars are exempt.

He stressed that lenient restaurant owners will pay for their lax attitudes later, as the government might be forced to shut down dining facilities if figures rise again. 

Egypt’s Health Ministry reported on Monday 189 new cases of coronavirus and 13 virus-related deaths. A total of 107,925 cases of the virus have been reported, with 99,652 of those recovering, and 6,291 deaths.

Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm

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