The Minister was speaking during the debate of the ‘COVID-19 Control and Suppression (Miscellaneous Provisions) (Amendment) (No. 2) Act, 2020’ at the Third Sitting of the Third Session of the Fourth House of Assembly (HoA) at the Save the Seed Energy Centre in Duff's Bottom, Tortola, on Wednesday, November 25, 2020.
“It's not that we do not have problems in our society, it's not that things that can't be improved but my God, can you not look at Nicaragua and Honduras after they were flooded and say Lord give thanks?” he said while referencing a recent experience at a church sermon.
According to Hon Wheatley, in the VI, there is a tendency to complain about everything, rather than adopting a spirit of thanksgiving.
“When you look around the world, persons [are] suffering and dying from COVID-19. Mr Speaker, we've had Virgin Islanders who live abroad who have passed away from COVID-19, we've had persons, who we know and love, lost family members, can we not look at our society and say thank God?” Dr Wheatley questioned.
Dr Wheatley did not say how many Virgin Islanders living abroad died from the virus.
The Virgin Islands has had one death from COVID-19, a Filipino national.
According to Dr the Hon Natalio D. Wheatley (R7), in the Virgin Islands, there is a tendency to complain about everything, rather than adopting a spirit of thanksgiving.
Dr Wheatley said some gratitude should include being thankful for VI’s financial services sector and its continued provision of revenues to the territory and that no government workers were laid off as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We have a whole lot to give thanks for here in the Virgin Islands and that includes the fact that we don't have any active confirmed COVID-19 [cases].”
Hon Wheatley continued, “As we move forward into this December opening... I pledge my support, I pledge my listening ear, I'm going to work hard to ensure that we remain safe here in these Virgin Islands, along with this team under the leadership of Hon Andrew A. Fahie.”
After closing in March 2020, the Virgin Islands will reopen its borders to international visitors on December 1, 2020.
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