The Jamaican Government has announced that operating hours for businesses and other establishments in sections of the St. Catherine North Police Division, where a State of Public Emergency was declared on Sunday (March 18), have been adjusted in keeping with stipulations under the enhanced security operation.
According to the Constabulary Communication Unit (CCU), the closing hours for all businesses in Spanish Town, Linstead and Bog Walk are now either 6:00 p.m. or 7:00 p.m.
Those that should close by 7:00 p.m. are cook shops, dry goods establishments and haberdasheries, spirit license premises, service stations, clubs and fast food outlets, pharmacies, and churches. Community recreational facilities should close by 6:00 p.m.
The specified boundaries within which the operation is being undertaken are:
North - from the intersection of the St Ann, Clarendon, and St Catherine parish boundaries towards Garfield Road, the Moneague leg of the North-South Highway and Guy’s Hill square;
East - along the St. Catherine parish boundary, to Sligoville, the intersection of Highway 2000, Lakes Pen Road, Port Henderson Road, Salt Pond Road and Hill Run main road;
South – from the Hartland main road to the Hill Run main road, and West – along the parish boundary to Ginger Ridge, Blue Hole, Marley Hill and Dover Road, to the intersection of the PJ Patterson Highway and the Hartland main road.
The CCU has declared that the security forces will also be placing special focus on bus parks within the targeted communities.
Prime Minister Andrew Holness declared the State of Public Emergency during a press conference at Jamaica House.
A joint Jamaica Constabulary Force/Jamaica Defence Force team was deployed to the area to undertake enhanced security measures for an initial 14 days, in accordance with the Emergency Powers Act.
The Proclamation under the Emergency Powers Act to bring the enhanced security measures into effect was signed by Governor-General Sir Patrick Allen, and has been gazetted.
The State of Public Emergency in St. Catherine North is the second such this year, following a similar declaration in the western parish of St. James in January.