Maldives reinstates curfew on capital as COVID-19 cases increase

April 4, 2020: Male' City under curfew. (Sun Photo/Fayaz Moosa)

Health Protection Agency (HPA) has announced the reinstatement of a curfew in the capital the Greater Male’ Area in light of increased COVID-19 cases. Apart from this, the agency also announced that parties and public gatherings are no longer permitted in the capital. 

An order by the Director General of Public Health Maimoona Aboobakuru read that parties and public gatherings are no longer permitted to be held in the capital area which includes Hulhumale’, Vilimale’, and Male’ City. 

The order also read that a curfew is to be imposed on the capital from 00:00 to 04:00 which means that driving in the city is not permitted and residents are to remain indoors. Anyone traveling from the capital to any other island is also required to quarantine while those traveling to the Maldives from abroad, are also required to undergo a ten-day quarantine. 

The capital, as the epicenter of the outbreak, has had curfews imposed previously due to the virus. The curfew in place since the beginning of the outbreak around April was lifted fully on December 19. 

COVID-19 cases in the nation have picked up alarmingly with an average of 50 cases confirmed in the beginning of the year. The figures have now increased to 100 per day as of recently. 

An individual that traveled from the island of M. Kolhufushi to Male’ City also tested positive, leading to the island being placed under monitoring mechanisms. Nine cases have been detected in the island where 106 contacts have so far been identified. 

A positive case was also identified from the island of A. A. Thoddoo, which has led to monitoring mechanisms being placed on the island as well.