Cyprus Mail

Coronavirus: number of SMS requests up on last week

The number of SMS sent for permission of movement has not changed much over the past three days but has increased from last week, statistics published by the deputy ministry of research, innovation and digital policy on Thursday show.

While the total approved permissions totalled 318,539 on Thursday and 349,353 on Friday last week, the numbers increased to 362,959 on Monday, 372,239 on Tuesday and 373,863 on Wednesday this week.

As shopping and exercise habits have not changed much, the increase is mostly due to the opening of barbershops, hairdressers, beauty saloons and driving schools from Monday, which has prompted the government to add category 9 to the existing 8, which residents have to use to ask for permission to leave their homes to visit these businesses.

The number of people who did this reached 22,563 on Monday, 22,707 on Tuesday and 22,469 on Wednesday.

Shopping for essential goods and services is still the most popular choice, though slightly fewer people have used this option than last week.

The second most favoured category is and was ‘any other reason that maybe justified under the lockdown measure’, with more than 80,000 people opting for it every day this week.

More people have asked for permission to exercise away from their home on Monday, when 66,257 sent an SMS for this reason, than on Tuesday and Wednesday when the numbers were 73,949 and 79,201 respectively.

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