(JAMAICA GLEANER) – Party promoters and event coordinators will have to wait two weeks before receiving permits to host large gatherings. All permits already issued will be revoked.
This was the declaration of Prime Minister Andrew Holness at an emergency press briefing held at the Office of the Prime Minister yesterday evening.
This comes after an announcement that the second case of COVID-19 has been confirmed. The first case was reported on Tuesday.
“Where the law requires, the granting of a permit for any event or gathering, no permit will be issued within the next 14 days. That means any event, whether entertainment event, any gathering that requires the issuing of a permit. Permits that were already issued will be rescinded,” Holness said.
Further, the prime minister said that the organisers of business meetings, weddings, church services, and funerals are being asked to follow the protocols that have been established for personal care and hygiene.
He reiterated that personal contact should be avoided as much as possible. He said while the administration would not yet enforce an absolute halt to these gatherings, he is urging citizens to use their discretion.
“As it relates to churches, the Government is not saying the Church mustn’t keep Sabbath or Sunday; that’s not what we are saying. I have seen many chuches internationally that have decided that they are going to keep their services online, and we are asking church leaders to consider some of these novel methods to worshipping,” Holness said.
Amid the announcement of COVID-19 reaching Jamaican shores, The University of the West Indies announced yesterday that it was postponing its annual carnival events that were slated to run from today through to the weekend.
However, in a joint statement issued on Tuesday from Bacchanal Jamaica, Xaymaca International and Xodus Carnival, organisers assured masqueraders that Mas will still go on despite the COVID-19 threat.