Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) Leader Philip Brave Davis yesterday raised concerns with the possible restriction of civil liberties following the prime minister’s announcement that Cabinet will consider implementing a curfew on Abaco following Hurricane Dorian.
Last week, Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis told The Nassau Guardian that the consideration comes amid concerns of looting on that island.
However, Davis shot that down.
“The call for a curfew in Abaco by the prime minister seems like a knee-jerk reaction as usual,” the opposition leader said in a statement.
“The prime minister’s sudden concern for security…once again is late to the table.”
He added, “We think the prime minister should think carefully before restricting civil liberties. There should be consultations with the population of Abaco before any such drastic solution is implemented.”
Davis accused the prime minister of rushing to Abaco “with cameras in tow with half-baked solutions” in the aftermath of Dorian – the strongest storm on record to ever hit The Bahamas.
“Where was this zeal when the experts advised the prime minister to evacuate the population to avoid the loss of life?” he asked.
Davis added, “We also urge the prime minister to disclose fully the death toll from the hurricane. Further, he should ensure that the security and other personnel sent to Abaco are properly resourced and not left to fend for themselves.”
Dorian decimated swathes of Grand Bahama and Abaco last month, killing at least 61 people and leaving hundreds missing.
In the days following the storm, reports circulated on social media of looting and other security concerns.
However, the government maintained that such reports were “grossly overstated”.
On Wednesday, the prime minister told The Nassau Guardian that he is “not happy” about the security situation on the ground and the number of police and defense force officers on the island.
Minnis previously stated that he wanted an additional 150 officers on the ground, something he repeated when he met with the top police and defense force commanders at the Government Complex in Marsh Harbour, Abaco, on Wednesday.