Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 25 May 2020

Coronavirus: Dubai visa centre shut down for breaching Covid-19 rules

Managers failed to install thermal cameras and too many staff were on duty

A visa centre has been shut down in Dubai for failing to take appropriate measures to contain Covid-19. Pawan Singh/The National
A visa centre has been shut down in Dubai for failing to take appropriate measures to contain Covid-19. Pawan Singh/The National

A centre that processes visa documents has been shut down by Dubai's authorities for breaching coronavirus rules.

The Amer facility at Riggat Al Buteen on the banks of the Creek failed to follow many of the precautions outlined by the government, officials said.

It was found to have more than 30 per cent of staff on duty and had failed to install thermal scanners to scan people for high temperatures.

Managers had failed to placed physical distancing stickers on the floor and did not ensure that customer seating was spread out.

It was closed for an unspecified period after an inspection from Dubai Economy, which regulates trading standards.

“Dubai Economy has urged all service centres to adhere to the precautionary guidelines,” an official said.

“This includes wearing masks and gloves, ensuring physical distancing and displaying related stickers, installing transparent barriers between employees and customers, and keeping number of employees and customers within 30 per cent of the total capacity.”

Amer centres are privately-run facilities that are authorised to handle various visa and residency services by the emirate's immigration authority, the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs.

Officials urged consumers to report retailers or businesses that fail to follow Covid-19 rules by calling 600545555 or visiting the Consumerrights.ae website.

Last month, hundreds of retailers were given warnings, fines or shut down as they began opening after several weeks of lockdown, though officials last week said lessons had been learned and that the vast majority of businesses were now compliant.

Updated: May 20, 2020 01:54 PM

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