Dec 24, 2015 News
Revelers who like to party all night into daylight are beginning to thump their chests in delight with the announcement that the 2:00 am curfew on night spots and other places of entertainment has been temporarily lifted.
The Ministry of Public Security has relaxed the curfew to facilitate revelry during the Christmas season.
A statement from the Ministry, yesterday, said, “Consequent upon an inundation of requests from businesses and the general public seeking to fully enjoy the Christmas Season, the Ministry of Public Security wishes to announce that, in conjunction with the Guyana Police Force, it is seeking to relax the enforcement of the 2:00am business d
eadline for bars, night clubs and other places of entertainment previously announced by the Ministry.”
The imposition of the curfew had been a controversial topic with the business community going up in arms against it.
According to the Intoxicating Liquor Licensing Act, the Minister is required to set a close-off time for businesses operating with liquor licences. In fact, the stipulated time on those licences read 2:00am. Therefore, the imposition of the 2:00am curfew is nothing new but, in fact, an already existing law which was constantly being breached.
The curfew was first welcomed by the Private Sector Commission in July, with its Chairman Norman McLean pointing out that the law clearly states, that these businesses should be closed by a certain time and therefore, stakeholders should not be vexed but rather they must comply. “The law says 2 o’clock; the law is the law. It was always there,” McLean asserted.
But the PSC changed course a few months later and called for the lifting of the curfew.
The Commission had complained that many of the businesses are faced with the threat of closure and downsizing as a result of this decision.
“It is also our concern that this could have a long- term, negative impact on our developing tourism industry. There has been no definitive study on the social impact of the later closure on crime and accidents and this tends to be notional,” the PSC stated.
The PSC had subsequently recommended that consideration be given for bars and night clubs to be open until 4:00 am on Fridays, Saturdays and Public Holidays for those night clubs located in commercial districts and zones, and those which comply with building codes that limit noise nuisance.”
It is with this in mind, along with the fact that it is the festive season when revelers tend to go late, that the Ministry has given consideration to the lifting of the curfew.
“It is a time for celebration and knowing the Guyanese spirit, the Minister (Khemraj Ramjattan) has seen the need for this relaxation,” the Ministry of Public Security.
In light of this, bars, night clubs and other places of entertainment will be allowed to operate beyond 2:00am during the period December 23, 2015 to January 1, 2016.
As of January 2, 2016, the aforementioned stipulated closing time will be back on stream.
“The Ministry takes this opportunity to wish the citizens of Guyana Happy Holidays and to urge you to be particularly safety conscious during this busy season, especially on the roadways.
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