…11 defaulters to pay fine, community service
By Stanley Onyekwere
An FCT Mobile Court has ordered for the seal up of Missouri hotel, located in Maitama District of Abuja, for allegedly operating a nightclub known as Traffic Nightclub within curfew hours, in contravention of the COVID-19 regulation, 2020.
In particular, the court presided over by Magistrate Idayat Akanni, which sat yesterday at the Eagles Square, ordered that the hotel be sealed up for the period of one week.
The court also tried and sentenced eleven defaulters to engage in three-day community service, with the payment of fine of N5,000 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, which is from 10pm to 6am within the FCT.
Equally, other five persons were those found on the premises were arrested, for partaking in the social gathering, which according to the court constituted night club activities.
Speaking with newsmen, the prosecutor, Udeme Umanah , who is also Chief State Counsel to the FCT, explains that: “Eleven defaulters arraigned before the mobile court were tried and found them guilty , and sentenced accordingly.
“They opened up their hotel and were engaged in night club activities in the area, thereby they were arrested.”
Chairman of 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.”