Exumas and Ragged Island MP Chester Cooper yesterday called on the government “to stop the jeers and start the plans” as the COVD-19 pandemic worsens throughout The Bahamas.
“We listened to the presentation by the competent authority that’s laced with jeers and nonsense and pettiness,” Cooper said in the House of Assembly.
“We must stop the jeers and start the plans. That’s what our country needs and I invite you to get on with the business of planning and running this country effectively. We’re not here to teach you how to govern. You’ve had three years now. The Bahamian people demand that you get on with it. We’re tired of the jeers.”
During his communication in the House, Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis accused Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) Leader Philip Brave Davis of pandering “repeatedly” during the pandemic.
“He has been wrong over and over again,” Minnis said.
“It is amazing that he never seems to get tired of getting it wrong.”
However, Cooper, who serves as deputy leader of the party, shot that down.
“If he wishes to talk about failures, we can talk about failures,” he said.
“We can talk about some of the more recent failures like the decision and the management of the quarantining of the persons from Grand Bahama. We are treating the people like lepers. It’s disgraceful.
“Yeah, we acknowledge the apology, but it does not reverse the impact on the psychology of the Bahamian people, the persons involved, who were escorted by police and arrived at a quarantine facility where there were big guns. We can talk about the failure of the border policies.
“Seventy-two hours, you can make a quick trip and you can come back. You don’t need to have an exam. We can talk about those failures. And then, you blame the Bahamian people. It’s contemptible.”
Cooper noted that Bahamasair ran promotions for round-trip flights to various cities in Florida.
He said those promotions encouraged Bahamians to travel to Florida, which has become the new COVID-19 epicenter.
“Then, you come and you talk about how Bahamians may have irresponsibly traveled to the hotspots,” Cooper said.
“We got to get real. These are serious times. We have serious issues to address.”
Cooper asked for the prime minister’s plan for Grand Bahama, which went on lockdown yesterday.
“Where is your plan for the unemployed?” he asked.
“Where is your plan for the elderly who were crying today about disconnections from BPL (Bahamas Power and Light) who has no income in their homes? Many of them, their waters run from a pump that is driven by their power from BPL.
“These are the kinds of real issues that we must address.”