Midnight closing time for businesses in state of emergency zones

Prime Minister Andrew Holness and Attorney General Marlene Malhoo Forte during the announcement of States of Emergency in Clarendon and St Catherine earlier this month.

The new closing time for businesses in parishes under a state of emergency is now midnight.

Prime Minister Andrew Holness announced the extension of business hours in the House of Representatives on Tuesday (Sept 17) as he spoke on the motion he brought to extend the State of Emergency in the parishes of St. Catherine and Clarendon.

“As Prime Minister, I am not aloof or separate or way above what is happening. In today’s world, citizens can communicate directly with their prime minister. I get hundreds of messages about what is happening in the SOEs. I am here to reassure Members of Parliament that this Government, my administration, my leadership we are doing everything to ensure that these extraordinary powers are not abused. So, I have gotten the calls from the business people, in Portmore, in May Pen all over where we have the States of Public Emergency. We’ve got the calls and the complaints. We hear and we understand,” Holness said.

Holness also announced that adjustments have already been made to the closing times for businesses in Westmoreland, St James and Hanover. The closing times were previously 7 pm and have now been adjusted to midnight.