An FCT Mobile Court sitting at the Eagles Square yesterday ordered the sealing up of Missouri hotel, located in Maitama District of Abuja, for violating the Presidential directive on COVID-19, by operating a nightclub within curfew hours.
The Presiding Magistrate Idayat Akanni, while ordering that the hotel be sealed up for the period of one week, said their action was in contravention of the COVID-19 regulation, 2020.
In a similar development, the court also tried and sentenced eleven defaulters to a three-day community service, with the payment of N5,000 fine each.
Our correspondent reports that six of the defaulters found guilty, are staff of the hotel, who were apprehended by the COVID-19 enforcement team for opening up their business within the curfew hours (10pm to 6am) while the other five persons were those arrested within the premises for partaking in the social gathering, which according to the court constituted night club activities.
Speaking with newsmen, the prosecutor, Udeme Umanah, who doubles as the Chief State Counsel to the FCT, said that: “Eleven defaulters arraigned before the mobile court were tried, found guilty, and sentenced accordingly.
“They opened up their hotel and were engaged in night club activities in the area, thereby they were arrested.”
On his part, the Chairman, FCT Ministerial TaskForce on COVID -19, Ikharo Attah, who led his team to enforce the seal up order, said the arrests on Sunday, and trial of defaulters on Monday respectively, followed the receipt of complaints from the residents of the area.
Attah said gallant security personnel visited the hotel, and discovered that activities there were in contravention of COVID-19 guidelines, they made arrests on Sunday.
“The hotel has been sealed up pending when the court decides otherwise, in the next one week, until then, the place is to remain under lock and key.
“The action is to serve as a deterrent to others, who run nightclubs, bars and restaurants, to ensure that they actually obey the rules. And if we found anybody like this, the place will actually be sealed up.
“Those who are running nightclubs and hotels should please desist from violating the COVID-19 guidelines, only hotels are allowed to open for business, while their bars and nightclubs should not be opened, as anyone who contravenes should face the music.”