MUSCAT, MARCH 21 – As the weekend was marked with the authorities urging citizens and residents to follow the directives of the Supreme Committee, the Ministry of Health announced four new cases of COVID-19, involving citizens. Of the four cases reported on Saturday, two were linked to contacting with previous infected cases and two with travel to the UK and Spain. With this, the total number of COVID-19 cases registered in the Sultanate stood at 52, of which 13 cases have recovered. The Royal Oman Police intensified campaigns to prevent crowding of people in all major cities of the country, including Muscat and Salalah.
In Barka, a café was sealed and fined RO 390 for not adhering to the decisions issued by the Supreme Committee and ministerial resolution No 96/2020.
The Special Economic Zone Authority (SEZAD) in Duqm issued a warning against mass gathering of workers.
The SEZAD has requested workers not to leave their camps (outside of working hours) except for necessary cases, and if needed, they will be sent in batches to avoid such gatherings.
The Directorate-General of Pharmacy and Drug Control of the Ministry of Health in Oman has issued a decision to suspend and withdraw two products from the market, which include Shield hand sanitising gel produced by Bon Pharmaceutical Industries in Saudi Arabia, and the First sanitiser produced by Rayat Al Bayan Factory in Saudi Arabia.
Meanwhile, Oman Air said it is suspending all flights to India until March 28, pending further updates.
The decision is based on a travel advisory by India last Friday, which said no scheduled international commercial passenger aircraft will be allowed to land in India from March 22 for a week.
As per the advisory, no scheduled international commercial passenger aircraft shall take off from any airport to India, after midnight (GMT) of March 22 or 5.31 am Indian Standard Time (IST) of March 22.
Oman Air will conduct its flights accordingly and notify passengers if there are any changes to its scheduled flights. “Passengers based in India holding Oman Air flight bookings can contact the India call centre.”
The Public Prosecution on Saturday took legal action against those publishing and promoting incorrect news related to COVID-19.
“Those who published and promoted rumours were summoned, interrogated and temporarily detained as a precaution. The cases were referred to competent courts,” a statement said.
In the beginning of the month, the Ministry of Health and the Public Prosecution jointly had issued a statement warning against spreading false information on social media.
“Spreading false information on social media is a crime in Oman, and could get a jail term of three years,” the statement said.
Sending or re-sending false news or rumours that would affect public order through various technical means is an offence punishable by fine and imprisonment.
Oman missions abroad have told citizens and students to follow the guidelines issued by the local authorities and stay at home.