Belize authorities have reacted to a spike in COVID19 cases by re-introducing a State of Emergency focused on Ambergris Caye and three villages in the Orange Walk district, with softer restriction on the rest of the country. Draconian measures to compulsorily imprison persons crossing the borders illegally, are being drafted.
Prime Minister Dean Barrow announced his decision at a press conference today. Perplexing, the measures were a day late, as the COVID19 spike was reported 5 August. Hundreds of people fled Ambergris Caye for inland Belize, before the state of emergency took effect Thursday night.
The situation on Ambergris Caye has been classified as community spread. Around 20 people associated with a church in San Pedro have reported having some symptoms; they are being tested and results are pending
Lock Down Measures
A countrywide State of Emergency to be implemented, with special regulations for Ambergris Caye (San Pedro) and for Orange Walk. The regulations will be less rigid for the remainder of the country
There will be a complete lockdown of Ambergris Caye for 14 days starting 6 August 2020.
Nobody in, nobody out. Curfew from 8pm to 5am. Kids curfew from 4pm. Limitation on gatherings. 10 persons maximum. Construction activity to cease. Movement allowed ONLY for essential purposes. Cargo will be allowed in and out. Essential workers will be permitted to work. Bars, clubs, nightclubs to be closed
ORANGE WALK DISTRICT
Santa Martha, Shipyard and Guinea Grass Villages to be entirely quarantined (just like Ambergris Caye)
Nationwide curfew from 10pm until 5am during the week, and midnight to 5am on weekends
Special considerations for essential services. BARS, RUMSHOPS, NIGHTCLUBS will be closed nationwide. CASINOS can operate, with no smoking or drinking. Mandatory wearing of face mask and social distancing. No gathering of more than 25 persons; social distancing required
People That Illegally Cross Borders
The three month automatic prison sentence will be increased to six months. Those accused will no longer be able to get Magistrate Court bail. They will have to undergo a lengthy and expensive application at the Supreme Court only. Anybody found with contraband goods will be treated just as a person that illegally crosses the border would.
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