Sunday 29 November, 2020

Going to beaches, rivers now illegal; citizens face $50K or jail time

Caura River

Caura River

It is now illegal for citizens to go to beaches, rivers, streams or springs.

National Security Minister Stuart Young made the announcement at a virtual media conference on Friday morning.

"What is also important is that we took a decision, and I asked Minister Deyalsingh to be able to make this announcement today as we're going into a week, please know, that Minister Deyalsingh based on the medical advice received, after consultation with the myself and the Honorable Prime Minister, we have a taken decision that we are no longer allowing persons at beaches, rivers, streams or springs unless your presence there is for the carrying out of a service related to a beach, river, stream or spring."

Young said citizens face a fine of up to $50,000 or six months imprisonment.

He said people are still going to rivers, despite Government's call not to do so.

"We saw last week where persons are still gathering at certain rivers. This is now illegal and if you are found there, you can be subjected to a fine of up to $50,000 and the possible imprisonment. At the end of the day we are hoping the TTPS does not have to enforce the law."

The Public Health 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCOV) (No. 7) Regulations 2020 has updated to reflect the adjustments.

It takes effect from April 3 until April 15.

"3. (1) During the period specified in regulation 7, a person shall not, without reasonable justification–(c) be found at or in any beach, river, stream or spring unless the presence of that person is essential for the carrying out or provision of a service specified in subsection (2)."

Meanwhile, the National Security Minister added that people are still not saying at home, but are engaging in non-essential activities.

"We're still getting reports of people gathering, some people still trying to sneak in at bars, this type of thing," Young lamented.

He also revealed that Health Minister Terrence Deyalsingh published Regulation No. 7 on Thursday, which he said introduced a number of new concepts in Government's Stay-at-home initiative.

"Yesterday's publication of Regulation No. 7 drew in Regulation No 3 which dealt with the bars, casinos, the religious gatherings, as well as the closure of the borders into this. So when you see Regulation No 7, please do not get confused. We have two categories of dates, (one) category continues until April 30, the next category when we started to deal with essential services...continue until April 15."

Read the full Public Health [2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV)] (NO. 7) Regulations, 2020 dated April 2.  

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