A man from the north-central Vietnamese province of Nghe An has been fined after posting a photo of himself not wearing a face mask in public on Facebook, challenging authorities to penalize him for it.
L.V.K., a resident of Quynh Loc Commune, Hoang Mai Town, was summoned to the local police station for the violation on Wednesday, according to the commune’s People’s Committee.
K. had previously posted a photo of himself to Facebook, showing him riding a motorbike wearing neither a crash helmet nor a face mask.
In the comment section, his friends reminded him to wear a face mask as per new regulations amid the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) epidemic.
K.’s reply? “Who dares fine me?”
After being informed of the violation, police officers summoned the man and slapped him with a VND300,000 (US$12.7) fine.
Police in Vinh City and Que Phong District, located in Nghe An Province, also caught two other residents failing to wear face masks in public on the same day and imposed a VND200,000 ($8.4) fine upon each of them.
The novel coronavirus, which first emerged in the central Chinese city of Wuhan in December 2019, has infected almost 937,000 people and killed more than 47,200 globally as of Thursday, according to Ministry of Health statistics.
Vietnam has announced 222 COVID-19 patients so far, with 64 having recovered.
The country has made it mandatory for all citizens to wear face masks whenever they are outdoors and warned that those found breaking this rule will be fined.
Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has announced a period of social distancing from April 1 to 15, which is believed to be crucial in the fight against the COVID-19 epidemic in Vietnam.