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Covid-19 in UAE: National Sterilization Programme Extended and New Fines Announced

dubai, uae

According to the latest announcement by the UAE Government, the National Sterilization Programme’s timings have been extended. Starting from Ramadan 27 (May 20), the sterilization drive will run between 8pm to 6am every night instead of its current timings which is from 10pm to 6am.

Since residents are not allowed to step outside their homes during the drive unless it is for an essential purpose or a medical emergency, this means two more hours have been added to this period of movement restriction. As such, the shopping mall timings have been amended too and they will now remain open from 9am to 7pm. The revised timings will be applicable Wednesday onwards and will continue to be observed until further notice.

The announcement comes ahead of Eid Al-Fitr when UAE residents are expected to have four-to-five days of holiday, depending upon the lunar calendar. It is likely that the renewed timings will also cover the Eid break alongside other safety measures such as the closure of mosques which will see Muslims offer Eid prayers from their home.

A set of heavier fines has also been announced for those violating the safety measures and protocols put in place. In the press conference announcing the fines Salem Al Zaabi, Acting Head of the Public Prosecution for Emergencies, Crises and Disasters said, “We have noticed reckless behavior from certain individuals, violating instructions. This has big repercussions.”

He added: “It appears that some people in society are being irresponsible and the insistence of some on not respecting what is requested, thus the public prosecutor has amended the list of fines and penalties.”

See the full list of fines below:

• Dh50,000: Fines for those who don’t abide by the closure of schools, gyms, cinemas, parks, cafes, restaurants, pools. Dh50,000 fine also applies to those not abiding by opening and closing times of restaurants, parks, malls, etc.
• Dh10,000: Fines for individuals who have or had Covid-19 and refuse to download app used for Covid-19 tracing
• Dh20,000: Fines for individuals who have or had Covid-19 and try to tamper with tracking device or app installed by authorities
• Dh20,000: Not placing thermal cameras where required
• Having a party or gathering: Dh10,000 for the host, Dh5,000 for each attendee
• In cars, more than three people traveling, no masks: Dh3,000
• Not wearing masks at work, offices: Dh5,000 for company, Dh500 for employee
• Dh3,000: Company failing to maintain a 30 percent limit on the workforce at office
• Not maintaining social distancing at work or other places such as shops or restaurants: Dh3,000 per person involved and Dh5,000 for institutions
• Dh5,000: Shops that operate beyond permitted times
• Dh5,000: Refusing to do a Covid-19 test
• Dh1,000: Refusing to redo a Covid-19 test after two weeks
• Dh3,000: Violating restrictions during the sterilization period
• Private tutors violating current rules: Dh30,000 and Dh20,000 for whoever hosts the tutor
• Moving workers between emirates: Dh10,000 fines for the company and the vehicle will be confiscated.

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