The Police Command in Lagos State says it has arrested no fewer than 300 people between Jan.1 and date for violating COVID-19 protocols following the resurgence of the second wave of the virus.
The Command’s Public Relations Officer, CSP Olumuyiwa Adejobi, disclosed this to newsmen at the State Criminal Investigation Department (SCID) Panti, Yaba, on Wednesday where Mr Bruno Owede, the CEO of Play Empire Club, located on Victoria Island was kept after his arrest.
Adejobi said that Owede was arrested on Friday because he opened his club to social activities where numerous people gathered, thereby breaching the COVID-19 protocols in the state.
“Owede has been charged to the Magistrates’ Court, Ebute Meta, according to the provisions of the law,” he said.
The officer said that the Commissioner of Police in Lagos State, Mr Hakeem Odumosu, had earlier promised to arrest club owners alongside clubbers and fun seekers found to be violating the COVID-19 protocols.
Adejobi said that if club owners did not operate, then clubbers and fun seekers would have no room to patronise them.
“At least, people will know that we match our words with actions. Therefore, we are appealing to other club owners to stop violating the COVID-19 protocols for our own good.
“Other club owners and fun seekers should know that it is a criminal offence in Lagos State for you to break or violate the protocols.
“The Command will not relent on its efforts to ensure the full enforcement of the COVID-19 protocols and guidelines in the state,” he said.
The officer said that the Federal Government had clearly imposed a curfew from 12 midnight to 4a.m., on daily basis and that the Command was not going to compromise on it.
“Aside this, the government has also ordered a total closure of club houses, bars, lounges and certain event centres; although some centres can operate with permission from the Lagos State Safety Commission.
“Even at this, there are still conditions to be met such as maintaining social distancing, the wearing of face masks and avoiding hugging and handshaking by club operators and clubbers,” he said.
Adejobi said that these protocols were essential to help halt the spread of the pandemic which was not just limited to Lagos State or Nigeria alone.
“We want good health status in the state and we want the spread to be stopped in Lagos State.
“I reiterate that the police and other security agencies will fully enforce the protocols and orders of the government,” the officer said.
Meanwhile, Owede said that it was his manager that opened the club on that day without his consent because he was not in town when the incident happened.
“I am sorry for the actions and any inconveniences the negligence of my manager might have caused the state and the country as a whole,” he said.
Owede advised other club owners to shut down their clubs to social activities and adhere to the COVID-19 protocols in other to curb the spread of the virus in the state.