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Coast Guard, GSU take law into own hands, punish Likoni ferry users not wearing masks

Kenya Coast Guard Service (KCGS) and General Service Unit (GSU) officers at the Likoni channel have taken the law into their own hands and are punishing people found without face masks.

The security officers Wednesday morning forced commuters to lie down at push-up position while using their fists.

At around 8.50am, the Nation saw at least eight men who were held by the officers and forced to do the “punishment” at the mainland side ramp.

Those arrested by the officers were found not wearing their masks appropriately with a majority having them on their chins and without covering their mouths and noses.

Hands up

A woman was also arrested and asked to put her hands up while facing the wall.

Mr Moses Juma, who was among those who were held by the officers in the morning, said he had not put on his mask properly when he was apprehended.

“They asked me to lie down for 10 minutes. I was not putting on my mask properly and the officers called me and asked me to do the punishment,” said Mr Juma, who was heading to Mombasa Island from Mikindani.

Some commuters said the move by the officers was “lenient” compared to being taken to court to face a Sh20,000 fine or six months in jail.

Covid-19 surge

Following the surge in coronavirus cases in Mombasa, county officials have renewed their efforts to ensure people adhere to the basic prevention measures to deal with the spread of the virus.

On Monday, County Commissioner Gilbert Kitiyo led a team of police officers in a crackdown against matatus and passengers flouting the Covid-19 rules.

During the operation, Mr Kitiyo said Mombasa must stop the rise in deaths.

He said at least 94 people have so far died of Covid-19 in Mombasa with those infected reported to be more than 3,000.

“Our hospitals are full. Emergency beds are not available. We have to ensure that we observe the measures put in place for our own good,” he said.