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Restaurant regulations being drafted but may be released on Monday, says lawyer

26 June 2020 1:18 PM

Attorney Ashton Naidoo spoke to the Tourism Department on Friday morning. There is a press briefing set for 5pm on Friday.

The restaurant industry was given the green light to reopen for sit down meals late last night by the Government Gazette but then there were no directives accompanying this statement.

Restaurants are ready to open and finding this delay very frustrating.

The Department of Tourism has announced a press conference fro 5pm on Friday.

Ashton Naidoo, a partner at Mooney Ford Attorneys tells Ray White he spoke to the Tourism Department on Friday morning.

He notes that there is a difference between directions and regulations.

The directions are currently being drafted. It should be ready by the end of today, but they are giving themselves some leeway and saying it is going to be announced on Monday.

Ashton Naidoo,Partner - Mooney Ford Attorneys

We've got to take this with a pinch of salt, but most restaurants are only going to be able to trade from 1 July in any event.

Ashton Naidoo, Partner - Mooney Ford Attorneys

Naidoo says though it is hard, he urges restaurants to wait the extra weekend and be compliant with the law.

In the grand scheme of things, we want to be on the right side of the law so waiting two more days to have those regulations in place is a good outcome for us.

Ashton Naidoo, Partner - Mooney Ford Attorneys

The DG has given us the assurance that by next week restaurants will be trading.

Ashton Naidoo, Partner - Mooney Ford Attorneys

Nevertheless, Naidoo acknowledges frustration levels at the government delays are high.

The industry has been decimated as it is. I was up all night fielding calls from restauranteurs, the regulations were so vague, it was not what we expected.

Ashton Naidoo, Partner - Mooney Ford Attorneys

He says there has been over a week of stalling since the president announced regulations would reopen.

We then get, for lack of a better word, a nonsense regulation released that says nothing.

Ashton Naidoo, Partner - Mooney Ford Attorneys

He says from discussions with the department it seems like there will be no limit on the number of patrons allowed in a venue, provided that the proper social distancing protocols are in place.

No alcohol will be allowed to be consumed on site.

Listen to the interview below:


26 June 2020 1:18 PM

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