News Papua New Guinea

Controller bans gatherings of 20-plus persons

Commissioner of Police and Controller of the PNG COVID-19 National Pandemic Response, David Manning, has issued a directive banning gatherings of more than 20 persons effective from September 20 for one month ending October 20, 2021.

The directive includes events and gatherings of social (clubbing/bar activities, dances, dinners, parties, sporting competitions and religious activities such as church and fellowships will not be approved.

Further, all prior approvals granted for gatherings/events that will occur between 20 September, 2021 to 20 October 2021 are now revoked. Those that have been granted prior approvals must liaise with the Niupela Pasin team at the National Control Centre.

Mr Manning also issued another directive outlining the process for those requesting approval for hosting of gatherings/events of more than 20 persons:
a) All organisations, whether private or public, shall request to host an event of more than 20 persons by writing in, copying the Deputy Controller and attention to the Niupela Pasin team;
b) Request letters must indicate the following information –

  • Type of event,
  • Date, time and venue of event,
  • Number of participants who will attend the event,
  • Focal person contact information for communication purposes, and
  • Floor plans for the event.
    c) Venue facilities (hotels, clubs, government buildings, etc.) shall not host events unless approval from the National Control Centre is presented by the event requester/organizer;
    d) All organisations, whether private or public, must liaise with the Niupela Pasin Team to ensure due process of pre-event set up assessment and event assessment is adhered to.

As per the new directive, all organisations, whether private or public, shall formulate standard operating procedures for COVID-19 safety within their organisations and submit to the Niupela Pasin team at the National Control Centre.

Private organisations and businesses shall liaise with the Niupela Pasin team in formulating their respective standard operating procedures.

Mr Manning has also directed that the wearing of masks is mandatory and effective immediately in public places as of September 20, 2021.

Public places include: the public transport system (buses, taxies), individual transport systems, shops, schools, offices, restaurants, bars, hair salons, hotels, lodges, sporting facilities, markets and churches.

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