Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis speaks on Sunday.
By RASHAD ROLLE
Tribune Senior Reporter
PRIME Minister Dr Hubert Minnis expressed no concern yesterday that some people will take advantage of relaxed COVID-19 rules during the Christmas holidays.
He announced during a national address on Sunday that residents can attend traditional Christmas and watch night church services after the 10pm curfew and families and friends can get together for Christmas dinners with a maximum of ten people. He said the provision extends from December 24 to January 3, 2021.
Asked by reporters yesterday whether he is concerned some young people will exploit the Christmas privileges to be out after curfew, he said: “Bahamians are honest and respectable. I respect them for that and I’m sure and certain that they will comply with laws and regulations.”
Nonetheless, Dr Minnis has repeatedly appealed to young people this year to take the virus seriously and follow COVID-19 rules.
On Sunday he said: “In order to celebrate Christmas and because we are doing generally well at the moment, I wish to advise you of the relaxation of a number of measures.”
Retail operators on the islands of New Providence and Abaco will be able to provide services between the hours of 6am and 9pm on Sunday, December 13, and Sunday, December 20. These islands are still under a daily 10pm to 5am curfew and other public health protection measures are still in place. On inter-island travel, Dr Minnis said: “Travellers from New Providence and Grand Bahama to the rest of the Bahamas will be required to obtain the travel visa, to complete the daily health questionnaire and take the rapid antigen test on the fifth day after their travel.
“This is the same protocol in place for international travellers to the Bahamas. Additionally, the requirement for people travelling from Exuma to the remainder of the Bahamas to take an RT PCR test will be removed.”
He said the requirement for an RT PCR test for travellers from New Providence and Grand Bahama to the remainder of the Bahamas will remain in place.
His address came hours before Ministry of Health officials said zero COVID-19 cases were recorded on Sunday.