Information Minister Melford Nicholas said as bad as the country’s COVID-19 situation is, it would be worse without the current 6 pm to 5 am curfew.
At the weekly Cabinet press briefing on Friday, Nicholas was asked whether the 11-hour curfew was having any effect given the continued surge in new coronavirus cases in the country.
The current curfew hours came into force on February 16 and will remain in effect until at least March 15.
Nicholas explained the curfew had reduced opportunities for people to socialize.
“The socialization of persons is one of the avenues that allows and lends itself to spreading where people get into, you know, relaxed behaviour, without wearing masks and being at bars where it is infeasible for persons to be masked up while they are drinking and having a good time,” he said.
“Because the stuff is within the population and because of the fact that there are persons who can be inadvertently spreading it what we’re actually seeing through the contact tracing regime and the increased amount of testing that is being done, we’re uncovering instances where persons would have contracted the virus and are making them wholesome again,” he explained.
The Information Minister said he believed “it would have been much worse if the levels of infection are what they are, and we were still having social functions that could allow people to inadvertently comingle with the healthy part of the population and be asymptomatic and spread the virus in these circumstances.”
“So, as bad as it is, it could be worse, and yes, the curtailment of these social functions is certainly helping”, he concluded.
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