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How Was Infected Able To Fly Home?

A Bahamasair flight carrying Bahamian nationals and residents makes its way along a taxiway towards the airport terminal Friday in Freeport, Grand Bahama. The flight was part of a repatriation exercise the Government implemented to bring nationals and residents home from Florida. (SURGE Media Photo/Tim Aylen)

A Bahamasair flight carrying Bahamian nationals and residents makes its way along a taxiway towards the airport terminal Friday in Freeport, Grand Bahama. The flight was part of a repatriation exercise the Government implemented to bring nationals and residents home from Florida. (SURGE Media Photo/Tim Aylen)

By RASHAD ROLLE

Tribune Staff Reporter

rrolle@tribunemedia.net

PRIME Minister Dr Hubert Minnis said a person who tested positive for COVID-19 was among the 183 residents who returned to the country on Friday, prompting a suspension of repatriation exercises. His revelation during a national address yesterday came as the country went without an additional confirmed COVID-19 case for the fourth consecutive day.

It has been the policy of the government not to let people who test positive for the virus return to the country. It is not clear when officials discovered the positive test of the person or how, but Dr Minnis said the matter will be investigated. The person has not yet been added to the nation’s official COVID-19 count, which was 92 up to press time.

“It was discovered after the aircraft landed that one COVID-19 positive passenger was on the flight to Grand Bahama,” Dr Minnis said. “We are investigating to see how the individual was allowed to board that flight. Three individuals travelled with this passenger. All four of these individuals have been tested again upon arrival and we are awaiting the test results. All passengers wore personal protection equipment which decreases the risk of exposure. All passengers on the flight will remain in quarantine and will continue to be monitored. Pending the investigation and review of this matter, I have advised the airline and was also advised by the health officials to temporarily suspend the repatriation flights which we will resume as soon as health officials advise.”

One hundred and twenty-four of the returnees are in home quarantine and 59 are at a government designated location.

Two planes arrived in the country on Friday. On one flight, 88 people were directly flown to New Providence. On the other, 51 were taken to Grand Bahama and 44 were subsequently flown to New Providence.

The penalty for breaking quarantine is a fine of up to $20,000 or up to five years in prison or both.

Comments

ISpeakFacts 4 months, 2 weeks ago

The same reason why the 70+ bodies from Hurricane Dorian have been locked up in a trailer for more than 8 months behind the Marsh Harbour clinic, we have no caring government and no leadership!!!

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bogart 4 months, 2 weeks ago

Jail them!

There is no point in having NATION'S NATIONAL EMMERGENCY RULES affecting the safety of the lives of other people.

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bogart 4 months, 2 weeks ago

....and also jail all the salaried personnel who did not pick up on the individual and individuals causing the individual to travel without being on the manifest. or allowed to board the flight. The magistrates and judges have been jailing those who break the rules, plenty it seems vagrants likely needing help anyhow.

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Well_mudda_take_sic 4 months, 2 weeks ago

Prison is only for poor souls in the private sector who breach orders or protocol, many of whom no longer have a job. The political elite and their wealthy cronies, together with all government employees who are still collecting their full pay and benefits, are not permitted to be imprisoned. Just ask any sitting judge.

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Well_mudda_take_sic 4 months, 2 weeks ago

Repost from a week ago:

I really don't understand how our government can ignore the fact that there are various testing technologies out there for Covid-19 at the moment and not all of them are equally reliable. In fact the CDC is so concerned about the higher than usual level of false positive test results that they are still recommending a person be independently tested at least twice and preferably three times. But those Bahamians and residents of the Bahamas being repatriated back to the Bahamas at the taxpayers expense are being told they need only produce a single negative test result from anywhere they wish to have the test done. Knowing all that I know about this deadly virus I personally wouldn't get on tomorrow's fully packed Bahamasair flight back to the Bahamas under these circumstances.

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Well_mudda_take_sic 4 months, 2 weeks ago

s/b false negative, not false positive

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ConchFretter 4 months, 2 weeks ago

Well_Mudda, presuming all you say is true, a positive testing individual (whether true positive or false positive) still should not have been allowed on that flight, with 50+44 additional individuals on that flight.

We can debate how to bring positive-testing patients home (N95 masks, separate plane, etc). but he/she should not have been on that flight.

I agree that more testing is needed, across the board

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TalRussell 4 months, 2 weeks ago

Come clean cause hasn't one health minister not done got he self fired and turfed from the cabinet...... how in the hell did the passenger(s) sneak and remain undetected aboard that mercy flight?
Might be starting to make sense why various government officials gave out conflicting numbers passengers counts said have been onboard the mercy flight colony....ranging from 190 -200?
Not sure, how do you show up the Miami airport and clear all extra ground boarding security and with no passport in hand be presented, nor a boarding pass, to simply walk by so many the airport's, airline's and ground security teams to have boarded a plane to manage to fly without detection into a foreign colony. and clear their security, customs, and immigration...wouldn't a planes' flight crew not have been required to carry out a prior to departure out Miami - passenger and crew headcount against the flight's final manifest?
Who's say that had he wanted to that Comrade Nygard, could've had sneaked he self aboard the flight as one the 190-200 passengers out Miami?

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