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Commissioner of Police, Gary Griffith. (Image: NICOLE DRAYTON)

Commissioner of Police, Gary Griffith, has issued another warning to the public, against breaching the COVID-19 Public Health Regulations, following the ticketing of over 70 patrons at a birthday party in Chaguanas over the weekend.

Commissioner Griffith notes that since Old Year’s to the present time, there has been an increase in parties, and is reminding party promoters, as well as members of the public, that the country is still facing the Covid-19 pandemic and that positive cases are still being recorded.

He is especially concerned that several promoters are planning parties which have the potential of turning into mass gatherings.

Commissioner Griffith promises that the TTPS will increase its patrols to deal with these events which are being planned, some of which are being advertised on social media.  He says this would include beaches across the country.

In an official statement, the top cop is appealing to the public to make a report as soon as they become aware of any event that has the potential to have a mass gathering.  Citizens are being encouraged to contact 999 or WhatsApp 482-GARY, immediately.

“The Police cannot be everywhere and know every event that is being planned,” he points out.

Commissioner Griffith says that as soon as he got real time information about an event taking place on the compound of Passage to Asia in Chaguanas, on Saturday, that he was able to act immediately and take action.  He also reports that police were alerted to an event at Tyrico Bay on Sunday evening, and the event was immediately shut down.

“Recent public events clearly show that persons in attendance were not wearing masks for which they have been ticketed,” the Commissioner says in the release.  “The COVID-19 virus is still with us and such behaviour from members of the public can only lead to the virus being spread with more persons being affected.”

In the news release, Commissioner Griffith referred the public to Section 4 (1) of the Public Health Ordinance Regulations which states in part,

“For the purposes of controlling and preventing the spread of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV), it shall be an offence, during the period specified in regulation 17, for any person to– (a) be found at or in any river, stream, pond, spring or similar body of water or any public pool for recreational purposes; (b) operate a dancehall licensed under the Theatres and Dancehalls Act; (c) operate a party boat or club; (d) hold public parties or public fetes.”

Noting that recent public events had more than ten persons, the CoP also is reminding citizens to take note of Section 3 (1), which states that during the period specified in regulation 17:

“a person shall not, without reasonable justification– (a) be found at any public place where the number of persons gathered, at any time, exceeds ten.”