Kingston, 10 August 2021 (JIS) - No permits will be granted for entertainment events over the next three weeks, as the Government moves to contain the current spike in coronavirus cases. From August 11 to August 31, no small or large events such as concerts, parties, tailgate parties and round robins will be permitted.
Prime Minister, the Most Honourable Andrew Holness, made the announcement during a digital press conference on Monday (August 9), where he outlined the revised coronavirus containment measures.
He stressed that the new measures will be strictly enforced, and warned that the police will close down any event that is being held illegally.
During this period, nightclubs and certain places of amusement are to be closed.
In addition, gyms, restaurants, zoos, parks, and bars are to operate at a maximum of 50 per cent of capacity. Capacity is determined by using the physical distance rule of one person to every 40 square feet of useable space for the area.
Mr. Holness further informed that no more than 50 persons will be permitted to physically attend a wedding and for annual and extraordinary general meetings of entities, the maximum number of persons permitted to attend physically is 50.
In terms of events hosted by public entities such as handover ceremonies, launches, groundbreakings, and opening ceremonies, Mr. Holness informed that no more than 30 persons are permitted to be in physical attendance.
The limit of 30 persons remains in place for funeral services and burials. This includes mourners as well as clergy and any support personnel. Burials can be done only on Mondays to Fridays during the hours of 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., and the time for conducting burials continues to be limited to 30 minutes,” the Prime Minister said.
Turning to travel protocols, Mr. Holness informed that these remain the same, where all persons are required to present a negative COVID-19 test within three days prior to their travel date. Additionally, the list of countries from which travel to Jamaica is not allowed remains the same. These are: Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, India, Paraguay, Peru and Trinidad and Tobago.
The Prime Minister noted, however, that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade and the Ministry of Health & Wellness are working on arrangements to facilitate the entry of university students from Trinidad and Tobago, who are pursuing studies in Jamaica.
Mr. Holness said that given the recent “exponential” rise in the number of confirmed covid-19 cases in the country, “we are now clearly seeing our third wave”.
He said that the Government’s focus in crafting the measures for the next three weeks has been on controlling the spread sufficiently to allow for the reopening of schools to facilitate structured face-to-face learning in September.
“As it stands now, this goal is severely challenged. We are still hopeful that we would be able to have some form of reopening. We are targeting mid-September, but it really depends on what we, as Jamaicans, do in the next three to four weeks,” he said.
The Prime Minister again implored persons to do their part in controlling the spread of the virus by adhering to the infection prevention and control measures. These include wearing a mask while in public, maintaining a distance of at least six feet from other persons, and frequently washing or sanitising hands.