Religion

Bishop Neil Ellis implores Biminites to adhere to COVID-19 health and safety protocols

Bishop Neil Ellis, presiding bishop at Global United Fellowship (GUF), is imploring the people of Bimini to adhere to the health and safety protocols and COVID-19 emergency orders  in light of a crowded party that took place on the island over the weekend, which could have been a super spreader event; and had Prime Minister Hubert Minnis urging attendees to self-isolate and assume they could have been infected with COVID-19.

“Now is not the time to challenge the authorities to our collective detriment,” said Ellis in a written statement yesterday.

“In light of the recent reports of an increase in the number of COVID cases in Bimini and an apparent breach of protocol, I am led to encourage the people of Bimini to remain steadfast, perseverance and disciplined.”

A video showing scores of maskless people partying on Bimini went viral over the weekend. In the video, an MC said, “It’s after 12. Bimini ain’t on no curfew. Nassau on curfew. It’s after 12. We in Bimini. Bimini sweet too, sweet bad-bad.”

Bimini residents are not under a curfew, but the emergency order states that a person may host or attend a gathering of not more than 20 persons at a private residence or facility.

Of the 7,323 confirmed COVID-19 cases as of Tuesday, Bimini and Cat Cay has 76 confirmed cases.

Since March, Bimini and Cat Cay recorded 63 cases of COVID-19. The island recorded four cases during November.

“You would recall a few months ago, when the first wave of the pandemic impacted Bimini – and the first Bahamian to lose her life as a result of the coronavirus – how the people of Bimini rose to the occasion and sent a clear message by working together in the best interest of all.”

Kim Johnson-Rolle, a resident of Bimini, was the first Bahamian to die due to COVID-19.

“We are optimistic that the world is moving closer to an approved solution, which will prove a major step in the return to normalcy. By God’s grace and the prayers of the righteous, we shall overcome,” wrote Ellis who is also senior pastor at Mount Tabor Church.

Two vaccine makers have said that preliminary results from their late-stage studies suggest their experimental vaccines are strongly protective. Moderna has said its vaccine appears nearly 95 percent effective. This came on the heels of Pfizer’s announcement that its shot appeared similarly effective.

The GUF bishop encouraged the people of Bimini and throughout The Bahamas to remain cognizant of the impact of the pandemic and to be vigilant of the roles they each must play in its management and eventual eradication.

“Until such time, we must all remain dutiful, disciplined and determined – being constantly reminded that the eternal God is our refuge and underneath are His everlasting arms,” said Ellis.

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Shavaughn Moss

Shavaughn Moss joined The Nassau Guardian as a sports reporter in 1989. She was later promoted to sports editor. Shavaughn covered every major athletic championship from the CARIFTA to Central American and Caribbean Championships through to World Championships and Olympics. Shavaughn was appointed as the Lifestyles Editor a few years later.

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