Prime Minister Andrew Holness has admitted that he was initially reluctant to re-impose the islandwide 8 p.m. curfew.

In responding to criticisms that the new curfew hours would further damage economic recovery, the Prime Minister says Cabinet had to balance the economic interest against that of the public’s health.

He says the government eventually came down on the side of public health.

The Prime Minister says the trade off between health and the economy is a difficult call for the Cabinet to make.

He’s moving to assure citizens that the government takes the decisions regarding the management of the pandemic seriously and he’s asking citizens for patience and compliance.

Prime Minister Andrew Holness.

Holness announced the revised curfew hours on Wednesday after the country recorded four consecutive days of Covid positive cases exceeding the 200 mark.

The nightly curfew begins at 8 and runs until 5 the next morning. The new curfew order expires on February 24.

The Prime Minister was speaking at an NHT handing over ceremony in Windcrest, Hellshire St. Catherine.