Dr Keith Rowley

Dr. Keith Rowley

Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley has announced that the stay-at-home order has been extended to April 30.

And all food services have been closed, effective tomorrow, until April 30.

Schools will not reopen for the new term on April 20.

And the Secondary Entrance Assessment (SEA), planned for some time in May, will have to be rescheduled.

Government will begin distributing masks to citizens who have been told to wear the masks in public.

And there are changes in the times during which essential businesses are permitted to open.

The new order comes into effect on Tuesday.

The announcement was made this morning during a press conference at the Diplomatic Centre, St Anns.

Rowley told the nation that the health authorities tracking the spread of COVID-19 expects that by April 15, when the stay-at-home order was expected to end, “It is quite likely, certainly possible, we may be in a worse position that we were when we started”.

He said the stay-at-home order would be enforced with greater compliance, to deal with the problem.

He said he was not about people preserving their comfort zone or earning capacity.

As a result, he said that effective immediately, the recommendation was that members of the public wears masks, and that the State would begin a mask-distribution programme.

He said hardware stores, and electrical and plumbing businesses will be allowed to open from 8a.m. to noon, Monday to Saturday.

The businesses that have been allowed to open, including some retails stores, discount stores, markets, fruit stalls, bakeries and parlours which provide food, have to close by 6pm.

Wholesales businesses providing food will have to close by 4p.m.

Pharmacies will close by 8p.m.