The Accra Regional Police Public Relations Officer, DSP Afia Tenge has disclosed that the law regarding the arrest of persons without facemask is not clear enough to be strictly enforced.
According to her there are some grey areas in enforcing the law including space law-breakers will be put after their arrest.
Speaking to GhanaWeb, Afia Tenge said, “we are seeing some mass disobedience from people and as I indicated, I have been trying to find out our operational parameters because there were a number of some grey areas in the law regarding the enforcement. It is one thing coming up with a law, it is another thing enforcing it. We need clear guidelines on it, on how we are going to go about it. Even when we arrest them, where do we put them? Not knowing whether the person is a carrier or not.”
Nevertheless, she insisted that people without the mask could still be arrested, however, that will be based on the discretion of the police.
“The law has been passed so everybody can be arrested … but as it stands now, if I see you in a public place and the police officer sees that you are not in nose masks, the police officer can arrest you. At first, there were no laws, but now we have the Executive Instrument 164 criminalizing not wearing of face masks, but most of it will be dependent on the discretion of the police officer,” she emphasized.
She urged the public to adhere to the facemask directive not just for the fear of being arrested but largely to save their lives.
“It is behavioural, so if people are not adhering to the wearing, it has become more of a humanitarian operation and we expect people to comply so that they do not infect others or they also do not contract it,” she noted.