Drivers Try to Evade Lockdown Rules, Can Face $200 Fines

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Samoa’s roads were declared completely closed to the public during its two-day lockdown to allow health and national emergency operations centre teams to administer mass vaccination against Covid-19.

“All roads will be closed to the traveling public except for authorized vehicles,” was the announcement by NEOC issued last Sunday.

Samoa Police traffic officers, however, said several drivers were warned today for breaking lockdown rules.

“They all tried to give all sorts of excuses for being on the road..”

“We warned many vehicles today and made them turn back to return home;

“However tomorrow we will issue fines if the public continue to disobey”.

The fine is $200 tala according to police.

All government and private sector services were closed from 8am to 6pm with few exceptions for essential services.

“This is to ensure that the people remain at home to await the vaccination teams that will be mobilized around the country”, stated the official notice.

There were 83 teams in Upolu and 41 for Savaii despatched on day 1 of the nation wide lockdown.

6.30pm Day 1. Residents say the teams did not get around to visiting them today.

At 6pm, vehicles were seen lining up at petrol stations to be filled. Shops across the country also opened up as traffic built up and the roads came back to life.

There were also many red flags still seen along the main road in Lotopa heading up towards Siusega.

No they didn’t come to us today,” confirmed residents.

A Vaivase resident also said she had waited all day today with a red flag infront of her house.

“I guess they’re coming to us tomorrow,” she said.

A family SGN interviewed in Falevao also said they were not visited as of 6pm today.