PM: Marsh Harbour Port should open this week

Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis announced yesterday that the Marsh Harbour Port will be functional by Wednesday.

“That’s being cleared now so we’re hoping to have that cleared by Wednesday so that we can meet all of the international standards and have containers that are for Abaco come directly to Abaco,” Minnis told reporters at Government House.

“I will enter discussions with NEMA (National Emergency Management Agency) so as to establish some sort of storage facility near the temporary defense force base so you will have complete security and monitoring of supplies and equipment.

“I think we will have a better distribution there as opposed to being shipped to Nassau and then there. We do the same thing with respect to Grand Bahama so that they can go directly to those areas.”

Dorian leveled parts of Abaco and Grand Bahama after it made landfall as the strongest storm on record ever to hit land in the region.

With sustained winds up to 185 miles per hour and gusts over 220 miles per hour, as well as storm surges in excess of 20 feet, Dorian left thousands homeless.

Marsh Harbour, Abaco’s capital and center of commerce, was decimated. Hundreds of storm survivors remain in shelters on New Providence.

Last week, Minnis announced that the government is in the process of setting up temporary housing in the form of dome structures for people returning to Abaco in the aftermath of Dorian.

The project, which is referred to as the Family Relief Center, which will be next to the Spring City subdivision, will cost about $6.4 million, according to the prime minister.

Yesterday, Minnis said, “By next weekend, we should have at least 100 of the RVs in place so that government staff can now return to Abaco and put the proper governance structure in place…”

He added, “As they set up the RVs, I have discussed with NEMA so that one of the RVs in the particular facility would be to accommodate the prime minister and the minister of state with responsibility and other ministers who might come down…But we will remain very, very focused on both Abaco and Grand Bahama and we’re comfortable with how it’s going.”

The prime minister insisted that the post-Dorian recovery process will not be quick.

“But, one thing y’all must stress now, the public must not feel like everything will be solved in one year,” he said.

“This takes time but we will report to you regularly as to the progress, timelines, etc., so we will allow you to see the progression.”

Minnis is expected to visit Abaco this week.

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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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