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‘Schools will just have to manage’

EDUCATION Minister Jeff Lloyd.

EDUCATION Minister Jeff Lloyd.

By RIEL MAJOR

Tribune Staff Reporter 

rmajor@tribunemedia.net

THE frequent power cuts carried out by Bahamas Power and Light can have a “negative effect” on schools once they reopen in a few weeks, according to Minister of Education Jeff Lloyd.

Speaking to reporters at a Ministry of Education conclave yesterday, Mr Lloyd said interruptions in energy - as the prime minister has indicated - is a crisis and a deep concern to everybody. He said education officials may have to seek alternative arrangements for some schools in light of the constant load shedding.

“We are just going to have to manage it,” said Mr Lloyd.

“I’m satisfied that the executives at BPL have indicated to us that things are getting better every single day and we are looking forward to the day that I believe it is somewhere along November, December and this will all be finished and a new power plant will be on stream.

“Now in a lot of these schools like Uriah McPhee and Stephen Dillet, these are air-conditioned facilities. If there is no air-conditioning the students can’t be inside so that certainly is going to have an impact.”

When asked if there were any plans in place for public schools in light of the ongoing load shedding, Mr Lloyd said, “not really” because the space needed to accommodate that many students is not easily available. He added we “just have to go through it.”

He said: “It seems as if the practice is to two to three hours a loss of power on a given day so that can be managed. If it’s twice a day or more than that, that’s going to be a problem. We will have to look and see how will manage it. We will have to see alternative arrangements.

“In 2017 when we had the situation to Stephen Dillet, we were able to use the Wesley Methodist Church…that worked out fairly well for us. Of course, you know we have the gyms and some facilities at the stadium so all of those things are being contemplated but we hope we will never have to come to that.”

Bahamas Union of Teachers President Belinda Wilson also expressed her concerns relating to the constant power cuts. 

Mrs Wilson said: “BPL is not a reliable service so if we are going to rely on technology then what are the alternatives energy producing avenues that we are going to use for our schools and that’s a major concern for us.”

On Sunday, Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis toured BPL’s plants in a private visit and declared unreliable power in New Providence a “crisis” for Bahamian families.

The media was not told of the visit in advance. The first notification to the media was in the form of a late-night press release, and there was no opportunity to put questions to Dr Minnis at the time about BPL’s problems. 

Comments

TheMadHatter 3 years, 5 months ago

I recall when Dame Ivy was Education Minister she remarked how when she went to school it was held outside under a tree - suggesting that things were do much better then in the early 90s. Now, over 20 years later, Bahamians are told "schools will just have to manage" Dont worry about it Jeff. Bahamians already know that, as Bahamians, we will just have to suck egg.

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Sickened 3 years, 5 months ago

Well it's not really like most of the students are learning much anyway! Just sayin' Those students who want to learn will learn even under very harsh conditions. Power outages and no a/c or fans aren't going to stop a handful of our serious learners.

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Well_mudda_take_sic 3 years, 5 months ago

Meanwhile we taxpayers are paying him a small fortune as cabinet minister with all sorts of add-on perks and benefits so he can educate his children in very expensive colleges/universities abroad. This man is just a useless sod sucking on the public purse like so many others. What a joke!

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Damifiknow 3 years, 5 months ago

Boy I tell ya and all you had to do was service the Generators!

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bcitizen 3 years, 5 months ago

We will be back in the stone ages if the Bahamas has a storm this year.

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