The Lagos State Magistrates’ Court in Yaba, on Wednesday, sentenced 78 persons to one month community service for violating the state government’s lockdown order to limit the spread of the coronavirus.

It was gathered that 37 of the violators were arrested by the police while exercising on the Gbagada Expressway; 18 others were apprehended in the Ajegunle area of the state, while the remaining 23 persons were nabbed in others parts of the state.

The violators were arraigned separately on one count of unlawful gathering before Magistrate Peter Ojo.

While arraigning the Gbagada group, the prosecutor, A. A. Adegoke, told the court that they committed the offence on Tuesday on Bush Street/Gbagada Expressway/Ogudu area of the state.

He added, “They gathered at the aforementioned address with over 20 persons in attendance, contrary to the social distancing directive of Mr Governor of Lagos, made pursuant to Regulations 8(1)(a) and (b) and 17(1) of the Lagos State Infectious Diseases (Emergency Prevention) Regulations, 2020, and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 58 of the Public Health Law, 2015.”

Sentencing those who pleaded guilty, the magistrate ordered that they should be quarantined for 14 days at the Infectious Diseases Hospital, Yaba, or any other medical facility designated by the state Commissioner for Health.

He ordered that they should be tested twice for COVID-19 and if the result was negative, they should then serve their community service at the state secretariat, Alausa.

“They must ensure that the premises are kept clean. Where their test result is positive, they shall be remanded for treatment until they are found negative. Then, they will proceed to community service,” Ojo stated.

The magistrate added that those, who pleaded not guilty, should be quarantined for 14 days and adjourned till April 21 for their re-arraignment and trial.

Sentencing the Ajegunle violators who pleaded guilty, Ojo ordered that they should be quarantined for 14 days and tested for the COVID-19.

He added that they should be assigned to clean the Lagos State High Court for one month, between 9am and 3pm on weekdays, as their community service.