A Magistrate’s Court sitting in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, on Tuesday reopened the Jabi Lake Mall sealed 10 days ago for hosting a concert by musician, Naira Marley.
Magistrate Idayat Akanni ordered the management of the mall to publish an apology to the government in the national dailies for violating the COVID-19 guidelines.
Magistrate Akanni earlier ordered the closure of the mall for the musical performance which held at the popular plaza.
The event attracted a large crowd with many of those in attendance neither wearing face masks nor observing social distancing.
Three staff of the mall were also arraigned for organising the concert in violation of the protocols approved by the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19.
Giving the order for the opening of the mall on Monday, Akanni stated that her decision was a sequel to the application filed by the defence counsel, Nnamdi Ekwem, praying the court to unseal the business premises.
She said that her judgment was based on the overall interest of those who would be affected adversely by the closure, noting that the mall had over 100 employees and other tenants who are not co-offenders in the matter.
“The order is also based on compassion, especially, in consideration of the economic losses that will be suffered by those affected, coupled with the impact of COVID-19 on the people,” the magistrate said.
Chairman of FCT Ministerial TaskForce on COVID -19, Ikharo Attah, said the FCTA had no objections to the rulings of the court “because the administration wants to remain a model in obeying the rule of law.”