British Virgin Islands

Thursday, Oct 29, 2020

24hr lockdown if VI flouts new COVID-19 measures

24hr lockdown if VI flouts new COVID-19 measures

Premier and Minister of Finance, Hon Andrew A. Fahie (R1) has warned that if the Virgin Islands (VI) fails to adhere to the new COVID-19 measures, including the new 1:01 pm to 5:00 am hard lockdown implemented to contain a spike of the virus, a 24/7 14-day lockdown will be implemented.

Speaking at a September 1, 2020, COVID-19 update, Premier Fahie said, "If persons fail to adhere to all the further measures being put in place now to contain COVID-19, then, and only then, we will be forced to implement a 24-hour 14-day lockdown," he said.

Decision in your hands - Hon Fahie


"So my people the choice is yours, the choice is mine.. we can either adhere or we will have to bear the consequences" Hon Fahie further said in his statement.

Citing economic, social and mental costs involved with a 24-hour full lockdown in the VI, Governor Augustus J.U. Jaspert said Cabinet's decision to instead implement a hard lockdown was one to avoid putting additional hardship on individuals who are already facing a very challenging time.

Hon Fahie had repeatedly stated that the Territory could not afford another 24/7 lockdown, the latest coming via analysis on Sunday, August 9, 2020, in a statement entitled 'Economic Boost for the Virgin Islands on the Horizon: The Construction Industry'.

"An internal assessment has shown that if we end up in another Territory-wide lockdown, the money that we have for rebooting the economy will have to be used instead for social support. And when that is over, we will not have any money left to reboot the economy," the Premier had said.

Restricted movement, closed borders


So far, the new COVID-19 guidelines have placed emphasis on restricting the moment of people through a curfew, restricting gatherings and strict border protection to prevent the illegal movement of people into the Territory.

Approved businesses and organisations operating during the curfew are also expected to play their part to ensure staff and customers follow all COVID-19 measures such as physical distancing, sanitisation and the wearing of face masks.

Authorities have confirmed 47 COVID-19 cases, with some 38 active currently as of September 1, 2020.

The majority of new cases in August is believed to have originated from human smuggling.

Citing economic, social and mental costs involved with a 24-hour full lockdown in BVI, Governor Augustus J.U. Jaspert has said that Cabinet's decision to instead implement a hard lockdown was one to put additional hardship on individuals who are already facing a very challenging time.

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