Some members of the public, who flouted the mandatory wearing of masks in public places, were forced to dredge gutters as their punishment in the Ga East Municipality.
These offenders were generally commercial vehicle drivers and their passengers plying the Dome market route last Sunday, during a cleanup exercise by the Municipal Assembly.
Police officers, who were deployed on the streets on the day, looked out for these offenders and pulled them out to dredge gutters.
Others were made to sweep and collect the refuse for onward carting to the final disposal sites.
Although, non- wearing of mask in public places is a criminal offence according to an Executive Instruments 164 (E.I 164 ) which was signed into law by President AAkufo-Addo on June 15 this year, the penalty does not, include dredging and desilting of gutters.
The Ga East Municipal Assembly, which has jurisdiction over the Dome market where these culprits were made to do the communal labour, put up a defense on the matter when quizzed by Journalists.
The Public Relations Officer (PRO) for the Assembly, Okunyin Fiifi Hackman, explained during an interview that, the assembly embarked on a clean-up exercise on Sunday after the disinfection of the various markets in the municipality the day before by the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development.
He said, the assembly just took advantage of the clean-up exercise to enforce the wearing of the nose mask, since one of the responsibilities of the Assembly is to help in the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic.
According to him, it was in the process of enforcing the law that those without the mask, had to be made to sweep and dredge the drains which in itself aided in the clean up eexercise.
It was an interesting incident in view of the glad acceptance of the offenders to carry out their punishment.
For those who were adamant, the police had to whisk them away with the intention of processing them for court .