UPDATED: Mexican workers 'all had negative COVID-19 tests'

Dr Merceline Dahl-Regis

Dr Merceline Dahl-Regis

• THURSDAY EVENING UPDATE: BAHAMASAIR Chairman Tommy Turnquest said all Mexicans who arrived in the country Thursday to do construction work at the Baker’s Bay resort in Abaco had negative COVID-19 tests from an accredited lab. Their tests, he said, were taken within the required ten day period. He spoke to The Tribune after top health officials expressed uncertainty about the test status of the workers during a Ministry of Health press conference. FULL STORY HERE

FROM EARLIER: MINISTRY of Health officials said they are awaiting COVID-19 negative test results from Mexican nationals who entered the country this week to do construction work at the Baker’s Bay resort in Abaco.

Images of the workers at Lynden Pindling Airport angered some who believe Bahamians should get the jobs amid high unemployment rates.

Officials previously announced that the policy to enter the country mandates that people must produce a COVID-19 negative test result from an accredited lab taken within 10 days of travel. That timeframe will be reduced to seven days starting July 7.

But during a press conference on Thursday, Chief Medical Officer Dr Pearl McMillan appeared unsure whether people from South America had even entered the country while Dr Merceline Dahl-Regis, the coordinator of the government’s COVID-19 response, said health officials are now investigating if all the Mexicans met qualifications to enter the country.

“Indeed, we had a landing of nationals from South America that came in,” Dr Dahl-Regis said.

“We are investigating this as we speak but I want to give you the assurance that (Ministry of) Health will require that each individual who landed present with a negative PCR test and if it doesn’t meet the qualifications we will do it, we will do the test to be sure that we have no transmission and if there is a positive test we will deal with it. We are told that they have had (a test) and we await receipt of those tests and once we receive them we will determine that they were good, valid, positive or negative.”

• See Friday’s Tribune for more on this story.


ThisIsOurs 3 years, 3 months ago

"We are investigating this as we speak but I want to give you the assurance that (Ministry of) Health will require that each individual who landed present with a negative PCR test"

wait a minute are these people being tested after they arrive? Because there are currently Bahamians stuck abroad from March trying to get tests because theyre not permitted to enter without one.


mrsmith 3 years, 3 months ago

Mexico is Central America. Did the aircraft originate in South America? Hope so... 🙄


mrsmith 3 years, 3 months ago

So I am to understand that Mexico is considered as the south of North America, but it for sure ain’t South America.


ohdrap4 3 years, 3 months ago

Well maybe there is yet another group of south americans, in addition to the mexicans, who did not take the test.


joeblow 3 years, 3 months ago

So Bahamians could not get home earlier in this pandemic, but another group of non-Bahamians have entered AGAIN while they await a 'negative' test result? What will they do if tests are not negative? Whose head will roll this time? Will it be the acting minister of health??


moncurcool 3 years, 3 months ago

What the heck? The law says people now landed are supposed to have a test. How the heck you don't know? Seriously? IF they had no test they should not be landed. These people really joking.

And where the heck is the Director of labour. He was in the paper talking about unemployment. How the heck he approve these visas for Mexicans to come in and work, when Bahamians out of jobs. We can't be real.

And want talk about celebrating Independence. For what?


jamaicaproud 3 years, 3 months ago

Man this is bogus. What can if rachetness is this.


TalRussell 3 years, 3 months ago

A burning question, is Mexico really a North American country, or geographically located in North America? I'd wager that the Mexican workers were allowed to enter The Colony as both belonging to a North American country, and as essential workers, something PMfive, hadn't for a long time allowed Abacoian Residents to return to their own Out Island. Just couldn't make this nonsense up. Just, couldn't. Nod Once for Yeah, Twice for No?


tribanon 3 years, 3 months ago

Minnis is playing everyone who voted for FNM candidates in May 2017 for the dumb fools that he knows they are. And only truly dumber than dumb schmucks would allow him to remain in elected office when he should have long ago been run out of the country. He must literally be laughing at every damn one of you. Your patience and tolerance with Minnis's arrogance, downright nastiness and gross incompetence has given each of you whot voted FNM last time around exactly what you deserve. Hell, even I'm laughing at most of you these days. I knew all along he would even make Perry Christie look like a saint. LOL


sweptaway 3 years, 3 months ago

This is Rich right hear ! No travel document or copy of covid test and waltz right on I bet we .Need to check some bank accounts in the Camen Islands over this!


Amused 3 years, 3 months ago

So miraculously they all had the approved documents before coming/landing, yet the two Buffon sat the press conference were just lost on the matter


proudloudandfnm 3 years, 3 months ago

Who cares if they test positive? Right now is not the time to let any company bring in foreign labor. No need for it, Bahamians can do just as good a job and Bahamians NEED THE WORK...


Hoda 3 years, 3 months ago

That a very great stance, but when you all are prepared to acknowledge just a few realities then I think a really productive conversation could be had.


tetelestai 3 years, 3 months ago

I hear you, proudloud,the optics of this do not look good, at all, but this agreement for additional labour was already negotiated in the company's heads of agreement - which is a legally binding contract. So, the government cannot unilaterally break the terms of the contract, without consent of the company. Government has no choice but to allow the labour. That is one of the tradeoffs for allowing a company to do a huge development. If the government decides to break the agreement, without consent, then that opens up even more concerns for us, as the country risks being viewed as a government that does not adhere to investment contracts. Potentially too damaging.


Clamshell 3 years, 3 months ago

Whoaaa ... by Thursday the test time-frame was 7 days, not 10 days ... that took effect July 1 ... good grief, even our so-called “leaders” don’t know their own rules. Either hopelessly inept or hopeless liars. And you tellin’ me that no unemployed Bahamanians around who’d be willing to do these jobs?

Oh, and Mexico is North America, not South America. It’s north of Central America, so ...

Good grief. This nation is so screwed.


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