Players in the entertainment sector are being implored to comply with the protocols put in place by the Government in order to move to the next phase of the gradual reopening of the sector.
Panellist and member of the Entertainment Advisory Board, Kamal Bankay, made the call as he addressed a recent digital town hall hosted by the Ministry of Local Government and Community Development.
He explained that the Entertainment Advisory Board, which falls under the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, held a series of consultations with more than 300 participants from various segments of the entertainment industry and it was agreed that the industry would reopen in three distinct phases.
“What would need to happen is that we need to show proficiency in self-regulation in phase one. Once we are able to show that then we can quickly move into phase two,” he pointed out.
“So we are here now saying, everybody that is in the industry, please make sure that you abide by all the protocols, because once we are able to do that, the Minister of Local Government can swiftly move to up those numbers once he is confident that the self-regulation and all the protocols are being followed to a ‘T’,” Mr. Bankay added.
He noted that while entertainment practitioners are happy to be able to resume economic activity, “we have to uphold the standards and self-regulate; it cannot be a free-for-all”.
Under the Disaster Risk Management Order, small outdoor events were allowed to temporarily reopen on July 21 for a period up to July 31.
These include small concerts, parties, round robins, launches, religious celebrations (such as baptisms and tent meetings) and festivals.
The protocols provide that these events should not be held without the requisite amusement permit or licence from the municipal corporation, and that there should be no more than 250 patrons and 30 production personnel in attendance.
In addition, these events should not obstruct vehicular traffic and access to public thoroughfare, venues must have signs and marking for social distancing, there should be no gathering at the bar area; and events must come to an end one hour before the start of the nightly curfew.
Minister of Local Government and Community Development, Hon. Desmond McKenzie, for his part, said that when the first phase comes to an end on July 31, “we will review and see how well the protocols are working”.
“We are constantly monitoring. Every area that has been placed under the Order is being monitored and will be assessed when the period expires,” he noted.