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Chinese Pointe workers want to go home

Scores of Chinese workers are asking the Chinese embassy to send them back to China as construction on The Pointe nears completion and the COVID-19 situation in The Bahamas worsens, according to an embassy official.

“On the one hand, their job is finished,” Yin Haigang, the embassy’s counselor, told reporters outside the embassy.

“On the other hand, they are worried about the COVID-19 situation here.” 

He added, “They have been staying here for a long time: from half a year to more than one year. So, they are very anxious to go home.”

Some of the demonstrators were dressed in construction vests and hardhats. Others simply wore t-shirts, jeans and boots.

All of the men wore masks and most practiced social distancing as they sat on the lawn of the embassy awaiting the arrival of Chinese officials.

Haigang came outside to speak with the workers at least twice, attempting to reassure them in Mandarin. 

He said he explained to the workers the situation that the embassy is faced with.

“There is no international flight available,” Haigang said.

“…We also impressed that the CCA (China Construction America) and the Chinese embassy are doing our best to arrange for them to go back to China.”

Haigang said they are coordinating a charter flight for the workers “in the near future”.

He said the flight should take place within the next month, adding that roughly 200 workers are trying to return to China.

CCA broke ground on The Pointe in 2016.

Four years later, the project is still underway.

Haigang said yesterday that it will be finished “very soon”.

He said the embassy “fully” understood why they demonstrated.

The workers left the embassy shortly after 9:30 a.m. after demonstrating for about an hour.

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Jasper Ward

Jasper Ward started at The Nassau Guardian in September 2018. Ward covers a wide range of national and social issues. Education: Goldsmiths, University of London, MA in Race, Media and Social Justice

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