Argentine Security Minister Sabina Frederic Monday warned that those who left their homes in the Buenos Aires Metropolitan Area (AMBA) for the long weekend which included the May 24 and 25 holidays will not be allowed to return home before May 31, when the current strict confinement is over.
Frederic insisted that Wednesday, Thursday and Friday are days that must be looked at more carefully to see if the new restrictions are met.
Friday afternoon and before the beginning of the measures announced by President Alberto Fernández people drove to beach resorts alongside the Atlantic Coast in the province of Buenos Aires. “They will have to stay where they are until the end of these nine days, which is Monday, May 31 at 6 in the morning, the minister explained.
She also pointed out that compliance with the measures announced last Thursday was extremely high and mentioned that by Saturday only 10% of the usual number of cars normally registered exiting AMBA has been counted.
Cars are required to produce circulation permits available through government-run smartphone apps and whoever fails to have such a permit shall need to explain the reason for it and it is up to checkpoint officials to decide on the following steps, which may include the filing of a criminal case, the impounding of the vehicle or the issuance of a ticket.”
Despite all the minister's rhetoric, significant traffic jams were recorded this Monday at the entrances of the City of Buenos Aires as a result of police controls, implemented to enforce the strict isolation measures ordered by the national government due to the coronavirus pandemic, due to which highways were narrowed down from six to three lanes.
The most direct consequence of these checks was that people such as health care staff were late for work thanks to a measure taken in the name of the protection of the people from a pandemic.
Vehicles were seized and drivers' licenses withheld from the offenders who intended to circumvent the confinement measures and return home earlier than they were allowed to.
Under the current emergency Decree, people must remain in their usual residences and may only leave to stock up on cleaning supplies, medicines and food and other necessities in essential shops and for the withdrawal of purchases authorized by this decree, always close to their homes, while recreational outings maybe take place only in public spaces, outdoors, and between 06:00 and 18:00.