San Fernando mayor Junia Regrello said everyone in TT needs to understand they have to make adjustments and work together to combat the covid19 pandemic. Regrello said this as he and other San Fernando City Corporation officials toured the central market in San Fernando on Sunday.
Last week, the corporation temporarily closed some of the fish and public markets under its control, on selective days, to deal with the pandemic
The Marabella market will be temporarily closed on Sundays but will remain open from Monday to Thursday between 6 am and 4 pm. On Friday, the market will open from 4 am to 4 pm. The central market in San Fernando will be temporarily closed on Saturdays. It will be open to the public on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday from 5.30 am to 4.30 pm and from 5 am to 4.30 pm on Tuesday and Friday. Opening hours on Sundays will be between 5 am to 12 noon. "We are trying to manage this," Regrello said.
Apart from sanitising the markets and ensuring good hygiene is practised by all its users, Regrello said steps are being taken to encourage people who live in Marabella, Gasparillo, Claxton Bay and environs to use the Marabella market on its specific days of operation.
Similarly, Regrello continued, people from Cocoyea, Vistabella and inner parts of San Fernando are asked to use the central market when it is in operation. He explained, this will assist with social distancing in the markets.
This requires a culture change. This is an adjustment that has to be made across the board."
Regrello added that he continues to liaise with Rural Development and Local Government Minister Kazim Hosein about the corporation's efforts to deal with covid19, in keeping with the Government's directives. Councillor Ryad Hosein agreed with Regrello that all stakeholders in San Fernando are taking a holistic approach to the situation.
One female vendor who has been selling in the central market for the last 20 years, agreed with the corporation's efforts to address the pandemic. "It's very good. I don't mind that they took just one day which has the most amount of people. At least we have the whole week other than that to sell.”
She said the corporation, vendors and consumers are all on board about what has to be done to prevent the spread of covid19. "You can sacrifice one day for the health of everybody."