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Police to Crack Down on COVID-19 Regulations

Commissioner of Police, Chester Williams has given directives to all formation commanders for the enforcement of quarantine regulations. Prior to leaving the country, he issued a memorandum stating, quote, “ it has been brought to my attention that a number of activities that violate the COVID-19 Regulations are being held countrywide and there is little to no enforcement from the police.” The memorandum goes on to state that “Commanders are hereby directed to ensure they keep monitoring the different activities taking place in their area of responsibility and where violations of the regulation that appropriate action is taken against violators. Today the Compol echoed this warning to bars, who have now begun to operate under the guise of restaurants.

Chester Williams, Commissioner of Police: “My office had sent out a directive last week before I left the country to all the commanders countrywide directing that we crack down on the enforcement of the COVID19 regulations particularly as it relates to those places that are hosting events. We know that many of the night clubs we once had are now licensed as restaurants but they continue to operate like night clubs and so the police need to do more in terms of ensuring that if these people have restaurant licenses that they operate as restaurants and not as night clubs. The important thing there is that when it comes to a restaurant you must only have alcohol with and not food with alcohol and so that is where we’re seeing that these establishments are having alcohol as their primary product as opposed to food. Now the other issue we see is that a number of them are hosting karaoke events, their having loud music, and people dancing and some of them are so brave they even go out on social media to show what they’re doing and so whenever we get these video clips police will look at them and the place and issue tickets to those persons who would have seen in the video violating the regulations.”

Williams sent a stern warning to persons who have been using the waters as a way of escaping COVID-19 regulations, adding that the department will be working with adequate authorities to bring violators to justice.

Chester Williams, Commissioner of Police: “I want to send a sound warning. There are a number of these boats that are traversing the waters between Belize City, Caye Chapel, Caye Caulker, Sand Bore, Placencia where persons are paying to go on these boats and they are having large social events on these boats. May I send a warning that these activities are illegal, it goes against the grain of the COVID19 regulations and so we will be working in collaboration with the Belize Coast Guard to go after these boats with a view to hold those persons who are hosting these vents on these boats accountable for the illegal activities.”

Williams added that the public has been working hand in hand with the department to reduce these illegal gatherings.