NASSAU, BAHAMAS — The government has issued several new amendments to the COVID-19 Emergency Powers Regulation, allowing law firms and Justices of Peace to resume limited operation.
The latest amendment stipulated that those legal services will now be allowed to operate from Monday to Friday from 9 am to 1 pm.
Real estate agencies are also now able to operate on weekdays during the same four hour period.
Under the new amendments, operation hours for selected business establishments have also been extended.
The hours of opening for pharmacies has been extended to 9 am to 5 pm and hardware, lumber, plumbing, home and hurricane awnings and protection businesses in New Providence will now be able to operate on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays between 8 am and 8 pm.
Additionally, the emergency order makes provisions for the harvesting of land crabs on the islands reopened – including Cat Island, Long Island, Abaco and Andros, Inagua, Ragged Island, Rum Cay, Mayaguana, Crooked Island, Acklins and Long Cay.
The government has embarked on a phased opening of the country as it seeks to manage the local spread of the virus.
The country has began receiving repatriation flights of Bahamians stuck abroad amidst the global pandemic.
The latest amendments to the Emergency Order also now allow any citizen or legal resident of The Bahamas, homeowner qualifying for economy permanent residency, or the immediate family member or significant person to be permitted entry into the country by international air travel.
During his last address, the prime minister advised that the country was still in Phase 1B of the government’s reopening plan.
On Monday, during an interview with ZNS Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis responded to criticisms surrounding his decision to allow some Family Islands to reopen for commercial activity and not others, amid the country’s COVID-19 lockdown.
Minnis explained that the government cannot open multiple islands simultaneously, given the risk of any island experiencing a viral outbreak of COVID-19.
He noted that the government had only intended on opening one additional island and insisted that given the land crab season and the expected economic boost from crab sales, it was decided to release Andros.
He described this time for the island as “Christmas” for Androsians.