Maldives Police Service revealed on Tuesday that a total of 3016 Malé residents stranded in islands due to COVID-19 travel restrictions were permitted to return to capital city Male'.
Individuals who wish to return to Malé are urged to submit their requests via the police permit portal' at police.gov.mv/permit or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, with an explanation of their situation.
In April, MPS allowed 185 individuals stranded in islands, resorts and safaris to return to Malé following a public outcry on social media over lawmaker Abdulla Riyaz's return to the capital amidst the lockdown.
At the time, police asserted that several factors were confirmed prior to issuing permits including:
- That the individual was not on an island under monitoring or quarantine
- That the individual's place of residence or stay in Male' was not under quarantine or isolation
- Whether the individual was connected to ongoing contact tracing of confirmed COVID-19 cases
On April 15, Maldivian authorities placed greater Male' region under lockdown for 24 hours after a Maldivian national living in the capital tested positive for COVID-19. Authorities have since continued to extend the lockdown, which is in effect until May 28, over a significant increase in COVID-19 cases since recording its first local transmission in Malé--one of the most densely populated cities in the world.
Presently, Maldives records 1,186 confirmed cases of COVID-19 with 1091 active cases. The country has reported four fatalities and a total of 91 recoveries till date.
WHO has classified the spread of COVID-19 as a global pandemic. The new strain of novel coronavirus has infected over 5 million people and claimed over 325,673 lives around the world. However, out of those infected, 1.98 million people have recovered.