POLICE this week held a meeting with Solomon Islands Chamber of Commerce & Industry (SICCI) and private security firm heads to discuss plans prior to the proposed 36-hour lockdown exercise from August 29 to 31, 2021.

A police statement said the discussions were undertaken with a view to ensuring important security services could continue during the lockdown exercise.

COVID-19 Police Operation Commander, Assistant Commissioner Simpson Pogeava says the meeting updated SICCI and private security firms on police operations during the lockdown, including processes to ensure that security firms were able to continue providing security services safely.

“During the meeting understandings were bridged with SICCI as the body, which most security businesses are affiliated under,” Pogeava said.

“Some of the companies will need to apply for exemptions to enable them to continue their important operations during lockdown, maintaining the security of persons and premises.”

Pogeava says during the meeting, both parties discussed procedures to ensure details such as names of security employees, identification, vehicle registration numbers and descriptions of vehicles were provided to police well in advance so that exemption letters could be issued where appropriate.

He says that for those firms and personnel exempted, the National Disaster Management Office (NDMO) will issue all vehicle passes.

“All agencies are supposed to have their own IDs, which are supposed to be carried by all individuals during movements.

“Other details will be provided to police officers manning checkpoints.

 “All companies under SICCI should liaise with SICCI for other detailed advice before submission of exemption applications to the Commissioner of Police.

“Please try to make it before Thursday this week so that police have ample time looking at application letters before issuing exemptions.”

Pogeava said police also discussed matters with the heads of private security firms and it was agreed that clear security plans would assist to manage some of the frustrations experienced in previous lockdown exercises.

All exemption applications will be submitted to the Police Operation Centre (POC), Rove Police Headquarters, not later than 27 August 2021.

During the lockdown operation, police can be contacted on the following phone numbers (Police Operation Centre) 27895, 27894 or police free toll line 999.

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