DO not think that just because there will be no Carnival activities this year that you can transform virtual events into a mini-fete.
Commissioner of Police Gary Griffith said the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service (TTPS) had no intention of being the Grim Reaper of Carnival but it must continue its law maintenance with regards to the Public Health Ordinance regulations.
In a press release by the TTPS on Saturday, Griffith said while he understood the growing frustrations of the clampdown on entertainment, laws were drafted not to frustrate but to protect.
The TTPS stated that it was aware of virtual fetes being planned which was against the present regulations.
“These virtual Carnival fetes are being planned via either, a contribution being given for you to get access to the portal, and one can then view the event at their home, or it being done via an open portal that anyone can log on and view the event, with the hope that donations would be forthcoming by those who usually patronize such events annually.
“One can understand the rationale of these virtual Carnival events being planned, primarily as an avenue to provide funds for certain institutions to offset annual expenses, inclusive of schools.”
And again, while understandable could be abused.
“These virtual Carnival events, if not controlled, would yet again be a cause for the virus to spread, as some who are either irresponsible, or see an opportunity to make a profit, are planning to get unto the site of these virtual events and set up large screens with powerful sound systems, even in their own back yards, then to have cover charges, or bring a bottle etcetera, and to have others view the event, and be entertained at such venues, hence turning it into a Carnival fete.”
Griffith reminded promoters of the dangers of such events and said the police would act accordingly.
The Commissioner also spoke about weddings where in some cases, there were reports of hundreds in attendance.
Griffith said, “We have absolutely no issue with the hosting of the smaller weddings, as we have seen an upsurge in this practice, however, the higher the numbers, the higher the risk. I want to remind the population, that we will enforce the laws, even if it means protecting you from yourself.”
And he said, “We are not alone in the ever-evolving fight to manage behaviours to decrease the spread, however, what makes it more challenging is the continued push back, including the constant questioning of the enforcement of the Quarantine Act. Our role is to enforce the law. It’s that simple.”