PLP says Bahamians deserve better response to pandemic

Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis has not adequately addressed the needs of Grand Bahamians, Co-Chairs of the Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) COVID-19 Taskforce, Dr. Michael Darville and Dr. Melissa Evans, said on Monday, as they accused Minnis of being too Nassau-centric.

“Grand Bahama is still recovering from the effects of Hurricane Dorian,” they said in statement said.

“It is now a major hotspot for COVID-19 infections. And yet the best the prime minister could offer is to concede that conditions on the island are grave?

“The prime minister was quick to point the finger of blame at people for becoming infected, but takes no responsibility for the fact that The Bahamas is currently ranked dead last out of 184 countries in the whole world for the way the government has dealt with this crisis.

“This is a shameful indictment on the government’s handling of this crisis.”

A Global COVID-19 Index report listed The Bahamas last out of 184 countries across the world in the recovery index, with a score of 6.99 out 100.

Darville and Evans said, “The prime minister must urgently provide answers to how the government is going to get on top of this pandemic.”

The comments came after Minnis described the situation on Grand Bahama as “grave” during a national address on Sunday, days after it was announced that the island’s two-week lockdown was extended. Minnis also noted plans to construct a new unit at the Rand Memorial Hospital, which suffered extensive damage during Hurricane Dorian.

Grand Bahama has seen one of the most drastic increases in cases in recent weeks, having had only 8 before July 8. It has since been identified as a hotspot for COVID infections.

Up to Monday, there were 945 cases of COVID in The Bahamas, 428 of which were on Grand Bahama.

“People are suffering,” Darville and Evans said.

“They need to know what the government is doing to keep them safe, what facilities and protocols are in place, and what resources are being provided to look after them.”

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Rachel Knowles

Rachel joined The Nassau Guardian in January 2019. Rachel covers national issues. Education: University of Virginia in Charlottesville, BA in Foreign Affairs and Spanish

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