Vietnam News

HCMC to ban people from going out at night

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HCMC will ban people from going out between 6 p.m. and 6 a.m. the next day starting from Monday, said the city’s chairman Nguyen Thanh Phong.

“From tomorrow evening, people absolutely cannot go out from 6 p.m. All activities will have to be suspended, except for emergency medical care or pandemic fight operations,” Phong said.

The decision was made as HCMC has been recording thousands of new Covid-19 patients each day despite going through 17 days of social distancing under Directive 16. The directive requires residents to stay at home and only go out for basic necessities such as buying food or medicines or to work at factories or businesses that are allowed to open.

Phong said around the city, there are still many people traveling on the streets, hanging out.

“That’s very dangerous, that’s the reason the outbreak has continued to grow. Without control, the situation will get worse, forcing us to deploy even stronger measures that might cause impacts on multiple aspects,” he said.

Phan Van Mai, deputy secretary of the HCMC Party Standing Committee, said in the next two weeks, the city will deploy patrol taskforce to make sure the social distancing order is strictly followed, and anyone violating the regulations could be detained.

Mai said the city will increase goods supply, support people facing difficulties, and handle emergency medical situations better amid the lockdown.

Earlier, on Saturday afternoon, Deputy PM Vu Duc Dam visited a locked-down area in District 8 and expressed anxiety on seeing a lot of people moving about amid the lockdown.

While traffic volume in HCMC had decreased by 84 percent in the early days of the social distancing order, it had increased to a 70 percent decline on Saturday, Dam said.

“We did not follow the rules strictly from the beginning. Without being strict, it will be tough to contain the pandemic,” Dam said, asking the southern metropolis to tighten lockdown restrictions and enforcement.

At a Sunday morning meeting, Mai said that the pandemic situation in HCMC remained complicated, even though it has entered the 55th day of social distancing at various levels.

“Rules under Directive 16 are imposed until August 1, but perhaps we will see a one-two week delay to make Covid prevention rules effective,” Mai said, adding the city will consider lifting restrictions only after the pandemic is brought under control.

HCMC authorities have been preparing for worst case scenarios and responses after the current social distancing campaign ends.

The city, currently the Covid-19 epicenter in Vietnam, has recorded 60,425 cases under the fourth wave that hit the country late April.

By Manh Tung & Huu Cong – VnExpress.net – July 25, 2021

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