Press conference hosted by Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley at Ilaro Court – June 19, 2021. (PMO)

Sports fanatics are expected to be able enjoy their favourite games in-person once again, after months of being unable to do so.             

During an address to the nation earlier today to announce a further ease in COVID-19 restrictions, Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley revealed that July 16 was the date “set” to allow spectators to return to various games and matches.

However, she said discussions would be held to ensure the various sporting organisations were prepared to safely welcome patrons back to their events.

“We do not feel we are in a position to do this unilaterally, therefore those conversations will take place [with] the Ministry of Sports, the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Culture, over the course of the next two weeks. But we are setting a date of July 16 to be able to have the resumption of spectators in sports, be it football, cricket or netball or road tennis…. Therefore, we want to have those discussions with the relevant agencies, so they are all in place by July 16,” the Prime Minister explained.

Acknowledging the eagerness of persons for the country to return to normal, Ms. Mottley said taking a gradual approach to the situation was necessary “because in many instances when we don’t do something for a little while, we get rusty…. We are no different with the reopening of our borders and the reopening of activities…. These things matter and we need to have practice to make it perfect”.

She continued: “I think you understand what I’m saying, and truthfully, the 30th of June represents six months, since the 31st of December when we first had to take this action.  And we know that Barbadians have really played their role over the course of the last six months. We know that we’re likely to be in this for the long haul and therefore it means balancing lives and livelihoods better.”

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