Supermarkets to close on 2 public holidays


Rajiv Diptee, president of the Supermarket Association. Photo by Roger Jacob

THE Supermarkets Association (SATT) announced on Sunday that all of its members will be closed for the Indian Arrival Day and Corpus Christi public holidays on Monday and Thursday respectively.

In a brief notice, the association said, “We wish to advise the public that all members of the Supermarkets Association will be closed this Monday (Indian Arrival Day) and Thursday (Corpus Christi) to give our employees time for rest, relaxation and reflection.”

This announcement came after the Prime Minister announced on Saturday there would be adjustments to the curfew period only for the public holidays on Monday and Thursday.

Dr Rowley said the overall 9 pm to 5 am curfew remains in effect and Government rejected a proposal by one business group to change the curfew from those times to a 6 pm to 6 am period.

Supermarket Association president Rajiv Diptee told Newsday, “Stores will be closed. Even before we received the ordinance, we had taken the decision. Our staff needs a mental rest.”

Under the amended SoE regulations, “restaurants shall remain closed and shall not supply or distribute prepared meals for sale to supermarkets, groceries, markets, green grocers, bakeries, poultry depots; retail membership discount stores; (c) wholesale stores for the provision of food, medicine or other necessities of life; pharmacies or convenience marts attached to petroleum stations, except where authorised by the Minister.”

Dr Rowley, Minister in the Office of the Prime Minister Stuart Young and Trade and Industry Minister Paula Gopee-Scoon expressed concern that some restaurants were trying to breach the public health and SoE regulations in this way.

On May 26, Diptee said, “Prepared meals will continue to be allowed to be sold in pre-packaged means at supermarkets. However we are not encouraging the replenishment of meals beyond a fixed number for a daily period and will not be advertising them as it attracts the culture of the daily shopper. This is something we are urging compliance with from our bigger stores in particular the chains.”

He reiterated the association’s call for priority allocation of covid19 vaccines for its workers as they are “frontliners and deserve a priority allocation.”

Diptee said, “A formal request was made for 3,000 vaccines for the sector from the current batch.” On Saturday, Rowley announced that TT will receive 10,000 vaccine doses from Grenada, with additional vaccines to come in during the June to August period. He said among them were additional doses of Sinopharm vaccine from China. TT received a first shipment of 100,000 doses of Sinopoharm earlier in May.

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