Minister of Health and Wellness, Dr Christopher Tufton has indicated that he is still not certain that there was a mass exodus of people from Portmore, St Catherine when the announcement was made regarding a lockdown of the parish.
However, answering a question posed at a virtual press conference Thursday (April 16), Tufton said it was important for the people in Portmore to realise that moving out of the community poses a risk to others.
“I have heard stories of some individuals of Portmore moving out after the lockdown measure was announced on Tuesday, just about two hours before the regular 9:00 pm – 5:00 am curfew started. I saw some pictures (videos) on social media of people moving out, and I am assuming they are accurate, showing some residents opting to leave Portmore to other jurisdictions to avoid the lockdown.
“To the extent that some people may have left, it would mean that they pose a risk wherever they go and we would certainly want to appeal to those residents and to those hosting them, to recognise that that risk is their own and also the risk of others,” the health minister said.
He then urged that people remain calm and call the numbers available particularly if they are associated with the particular business process outsourcing (BPO) firm in Portmore, Alorica, which is now under investigation and where contact tracing is focused at this time.