British Virgin Islands

Monday, Mar 08, 2021

Gov Jaspert caves! Undergoing 14-day quarantine

After allegedly refusing to undergo 14-days of quarantine on his return from the United Kingdom (UK) where COVID-19 is running rampant, including a new resistant strain of the virus, controversial outgoing Governor, Mr Augustus J. U. Jaspert has allegedly buckled to pressure and is undergoing the full 14-days of quarantine.

Sources in the Governor’s office familiar with the issues had informed newsroom that Mr Jaspert was demanding that he only stays “4 days in quarantine since the law was put in place after his arrival in the UK.

Mr Jaspert returned to Tortola on January 7, 2021, from the UK where he spent his Christmas holidays.

The Officer had noted with concern that the outgoing Jaspert can potentially expose staff of the Governor’s Office and other civil servants to COVID-19, even if his PCR test shows negative after the 4 days.

Efforts to get a response from the Governor's Office at the time had proved futile.

Governor is in full compliance- Governor’s Office


The Governor’s Office; however, has argued that the Governor was not required to do the full 14-days of quarantine as the policy had not yet become law but out of “an abundance of caution” he has decided to isolate for two weeks.

“The Governor is acting in full compliance with the COVID-19 entry protocols. The Governor landed in BVI on 07 April at which point a 4-day quarantine was in place for passengers coming from the UK. Shortly after the Governor landed, the Ministry of Health announced that the new 14 day quarantine would take effect on 11 January,” the Governor’s Office told our newsroom on Monday, January, 18, 2021, shortly after making the bombshell announcement that the Governor had issued a Commission of Inquiry into several allegations, including corruption and victimisation in the public service.

According to the Governor’s Office, “Upon hearing of the change of protocols, the Governor voluntarily decided to complete a 14-day self-isolation. Though he is only required to complete 4 days of quarantine by law, he is taking an abundance of caution to ensure there is no risk to his Office staff or the public. He will be performing his full duties virtually up until 21 January.”


Minister for Health and Social Development, Hon Carvin Malone (AL) had emphasised that the 14-day quarantine for anyone coming from the United Kingdom is important, 'so that we do not endanger the lives and livelihood of the people of the Virgin Islands who is looking to this Government to keep them safe.'

Government Protocol


It was on January 8, 2021, that Minister for Health and Social Development, Honourable Carvin Malone (AL), in a statement, said Cabinet had met on January 7, 2021 and agreed to a travel ban on the UK and Dominican Republic and that all exempted persons entering the VI with a travel history from either countries would have to undergo 14-days of mandatory quarantine.

"I wish to say here as well that Cabinet met and it was decided that EFFECTIVE IMMEDIATELY, all persons approved to travel to the BVI originating or transiting through the Dominican Republic or the United Kingdom are required to provide a five-day rt-PCR negative test prior to entry and must undergo a mandatory 14-days quarantine and a testing regimen on the day of entry; on day 7 and finally on day 14 when in the Territory.

“Cabinet has also decided that in light of concerning information and of the prevalence of increasing cases of COVID-19 in the Dominican Republic -- to implement a travel ban effective Monday, 11th January, 2021 of persons travelling from the Dominican Republic to the British Virgin Islands, except for Nationals, Belongers, Residents, work permit holders, persons permitted to reside in the Territory, diplomats and persons employed by Government and Statutory agencies.

“Additionally, as previously announced, Cabinet decided that in light of the new strain of COVID-19 prevalent in the United Kingdom (UK), to implement a travel ban effective Monday, 11th January, 2020 of persons travelling from the UK to the British Virgin Islands except for Nationals, Belongers, Residents, work permit holders, persons permitted to reside in the Territory, diplomats and persons employed by Government and Statutory agencies," Hon Malone had stated.


Health officials have said the new strain found in the United Kingdom, known as the B117 COVID-19 coronavirus variant, does not cause more severe infections, but it is much more easily spread.

Governor was expected to do 14-days of quarantine


Meanwhile, many residents in the political class had told our newsroom as well as social media that in their opinion the Governor needed to undergo 14 days of quarantine for the safety of the territory as no one should be exempted.

Further, some had argued that it would have been extremely irresponsible and even disrespectful if Governor Jaspert had refused to isolate for two weeks, even if his argument about landing in the VI before the decision became law.

In their view, the fact remains that the UK has not properly controlled their infection rates and that a new and more contagious strain of COVID-19 had been detected there even before Governor Jaspert returned to the VI.


According to the World Health Organisation (WHO) on January 19, 2021, there have been 3,395, 963 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the United Kingdom, with 89, 261 deaths.

COVID-19 turmoil in UK


Health officials have said the strain, known as the B117 COVID-19 coronavirus variant, does not cause more severe infections, but it is much more easily spread.

The Uk’s Office for National Statistics (ONS) data published on Tuesday, January 19, 2021, measured coronavirus antibodies in people across the UK.

It found that one in eight people in England had COVID-19 by December last year, a rise from one in 14 in October.

The number of daily infections, hospitalisations and deaths across Britain remain at record high levels, with cases breaching the 50,000 mark for the first time this week.

A further 1,280 people have also died after testing positive for Covid-19, the government said on Friday, January 15, 2021, bringing the national total to more than 87 thousand.

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO) on January 19, 2021, there have been 3,395, 963 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the UK with 89, 261 deaths.

Meanwhile, the Virgin Islands has 14 active cases of COVID-19, according to the latest update by the Government of the Virgin Islands on January 14, 2021.

All of the active cases are in quarantine.

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