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Government prohibits Christmas parties within the public service

Published 17 December 2020


Buckie Got It, St. Kitts and Nevis News Source

Prime Minister Andrew Holness

The Government will be among the biggest ‘party poopers’ this festive season as it leads by example to limit the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) on the island.

As such, employees in the Government service will not be taking part in the customary Christmas parties at this time of year into the New Year.

The announcement was made on Tuesday by Prime Minister Andrew Holness in a ministerial statement in the House of Representatives.

“The Government has taken a decision that all office parties related to the Government or its agencies or department, are prohibited,” he told his fellow parliamentarians.

“The Cabinet secretary today (Tuesday) wrote to all the permanent secretaries and that will filter down through circulars to the various departments and agencies.

“We have to set the example as it relates to the maintenance of the orders under the Disaster Risk Management Act,” added Holness.

Wine glasses in a restaurant setting.

Drinks in your house (Reality check for ‘Drinks on the house’).

Sharp rises in coronavirus cases in many countries have been linked to parties and other social gatherings. In Jamaica, there is a ban on parties, with the municipal corporations having not issued any permits for entertainment events over the past five months.

Nonetheless, the Minister of Local Government, Desmond McKenzie, told Parliament last week that some 300 illegal parties are held across the country each week in defiance of the Disaster Risk Management Act and the health protocols that were put in place to limit the spread of COVID-19.

The police have warned that law enforcers will be clamping down on the illegal activities which include round robins, bike shows and bingo parties.

Since the police asked members of the public on the weekend to tip them off about illegal gatherings, the force is reporting that it has so far received over 100 tips.

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