The Malta Independent 14 April 2021, Wednesday

Government expected to announce review of current Covid-19 measures tomorrow

Albert Galea Tuesday, 6 April 2021, 16:00 Last update: about 7 days ago

The government is expected to announce a review of the current Covid-19 measures tomorrow, The Malta Independent is informed.

The current measures, which threw Malta into a semi-lockdown which was similar to that which the country found itself in this time last year, are set to expire this coming Sunday on 11 April.

Under the current set of measures, schools, non-essential shops and services, gyms, restaurants, and bars are all closed while organised sports are banned and gatherings are restricted to two households indoors and two people outdoors – though the latter limit can be exceeded provided the whole group lives under the same roof.

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With the island on tenterhooks as to when the announcement will be made on what will be allowed to reopen and what will remain shut.

Prime Minister Robert Abela said earlier on Tuesday that the reopening will be “very cautious” and will have education as a priority – perhaps indicating that schools can be expected to reopen as from Monday 12 April.

This newsroom is informed that while some restrictions will be repealed, new protocols which will differ from those which were in place prior to these measures being announced are expected to be implemented.

The Malta Union of Teachers have said that the physical reopening of schools should not be the first measures to be relaxed, while the Union of Professional Educators told this newsroom that they are comfortable with schools being reopened, although they called for amendments to protocols on students’ daily breaks.

Other bodies and associations have also been clamouring to know what will happen come next week.

Three major sports associations – those governing football, basketball, and aquatic sports – came together yesterday in a joint statement to call for competitive sports to be allowed to resume, noting that transmission of the virus was negligible at best in their respective sports.

The Malta Chamber of SMEs meanwhile lamented with this newsroom that “the government is keeping people in the dark” about the reopening of non-essential shops.  “All we’ve heard is speculation on what’s going to happen”, Chamber CEO Abigail Mamo told this newsroom.

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