PM: Six additional people entered the country during emergency period

An additional six people, including three work permit holders, two Bahamians and one permanent resident, were allowed to enter the country while the borders were closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis said on Sunday.

Minnis, who addressed the issue during a national address, said all of them were placed under self-quarantine and were tested for COVID-19.

Minnis said one of the Bahamians left for medical attention and was allowed to return a short time later.

He did not divulge the circumstances behind the second Bahamian’s departure, or why that individual was allowed to re-enter the country.

He didn’t give any details surrounding the entry of the permanent resident either.

As it relates to the three work permit holders, Minnis said they were permitted entry for “emergency and essential purposes”.

He said two were needed to service Bahamas Power and Light’s generators on New Providence and the other, an engineer, was needed on a private island.

Minnis did not say whether any of these cases was considered a breach of protocol.

Last week, Minnis confirmed that six Bahamas permanent residents, who are American, were allowed to land on New Providence.

Last week, Dr. Duane Sands, then minister of health, took responsibility for allowing them to disembark and quarantine at home after they donated 2,500 COVID-19 testing swabs to the Ministry of Health.

Unlike Bahamians abroad seeking to get home, they were not required to test for COVID-19 prior to coming to The Bahamas.

The matter led to Sands’ resignation from the Cabinet on Monday.

A group of 183 Bahamians and residents returned to The Bahamas on a government sponsored return flight on Friday after weeks of criticism against the government over having the borders closed to Bahamian citizens and permanent residents.

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Krystel Brown

Krystel covers breaking news for The Nassau Guardian. Krystel also manages The Guardian’s social media pages. She joined The Nassau Guardian in 2007 as a staff reporter, covering national news. She was promoted to online editor in May 2017. Education: Benedict College, BA in Mass Communications

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