Ajman carries out 1,717 inspections on markets during COVID-19 pandemic - GulfToday

Ajman carries out 1,717 inspections on markets during COVID-19 pandemic


Picture used for illustrative purpose only.

Sohaila Ahmed, Staff Reporter

Inspection visits were carried out by Ajman Department of Economic Development (DED-Ajman) to the Emirate’s markets last April, in order to verify price control and the adherence of all economic entities and their customers to the precautionary measures for curbing the spread of the novel COVID-19.

The inspection campaigns resulted in the awareness of 431 entities, warning 152 other entities, closing two entities, and the detection of 46 violations, the most important of which are 8 violations for the manipulation and raising of prices, 12 violations for trading in cloned or counterfeit goods, and 19 violations for the failure to implement the instructions and guidelines issued by the Department and the competent authorities that are in charge of combating the epidemic.

Furthermore, the Department was able to handle a total number of 844 complaints, the most important of which were 451 complaints for raising prices and 76 complaints for trading in cloned or counterfeit goods.

The Department also received a total number of 822 reports, the most of which are reports for raising prices, being 721 reports, and 45 reports for trading in cloned and counterfeit goods, including facemasks and sterilizers that are incompliant to the specifications and standards, in addition to 34 reports for the entities’ failure to adhere to the implementation of precautionary measures and procedures.

The percentage of complaints received over the last week of April has decreased by 41% as compared with the same in the beginning of the month. The number of reports has also decreased by 19%, thanks to the intensive efforts for the control and follow-up of markets and sale outlets around the clock.

Ahmed Khair Al Balushi, the Director of the Department of Control & Consumer Protection, commented, “The Department is working with its partners at governmental authorities, such as the Department of Public Health at the Department of Municipality & Planning, in synergy and in an integrative manner for monitoring sale outlets, whereby a unified working team has been formed recently in order to unify efforts and approve uniform health stipulations that would ensure curbing the spread of the coronavirus.”

He added that awareness workshops were held for entities for the explanation of the regulations, stipulations and measures that should be implemented for the protection of the community’s safety, and several joint inspection campaigns were undertaken.

Furthermore, the Department is now working with the Red Crescent Society of the UAE, through 25 volunteers who are in charge of the periodic monitoring of malls and shopping centers, in order to observe their responsiveness to the instructions and circulars.

“We have employed the latest smart technologies, equipment and innovations in partnership with investors for supporting the field inspection and monitoring process, such as the use of drones for the enhancement of the public safety of the members of the society, the installation of thermal cameras at the entrances and exits of shopping centers and malls for the detection of any infections, and the installation of meters that are connected to smart displays for the observation of the number of visitors and shoppers in malls, beside determining their age categories, all of which have proven to be competent and efficient in combating the epidemic,” Al Balushi said.

On the occasion of the Holy Eid Al-Fitr that is coming soon, the Department is continuing its intensive field inspections, and it requests entity and enterprise owners to not raise prices and to adhere more strictly to preventive measures, such as receiving only 30% of the entity’s capacity, wearing facemasks, periodic sterilization, the application of social distancing between visitors, and having the concerned outlets receive customers in appointments, while the Department notes that it will take the deterrent legal actions against violators.

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