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Deportation Threat Over Filing Report

Prime Minister Hubert Minnis.

Prime Minister Hubert Minnis.

By RASHAD ROLLE

Tribune Senior Reporter

rrolle@tribunemedia.net

VISITORS to The Bahamas face deportation if they do not complete a short survey each day for at least 14 days if they are in the country, Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis said yesterday.

Citizens, residents and visitors who do not complete the survey will be fined $100 per day or one week in prison. For visitors, they also will be deported.

The survey requirement is in addition to other COVID-19 requirements for travellers,, such as a RT-PCR test five days before arrival and a rapid antigen test on the fifth day of arriving in the country.

The survey will be provided through the website travel.gov.bs.

Additionally, the domestic travel health visa must be presented to air and sea carrier operators before boarding an aircraft or marine vessel.

If this requirement is breached, the carrier or owner of the vessel is subject to a fine of $2,000 for every passenger travelling without the domestic travel health visa. The passenger also will be subject to a fine of $1,000.

This comes as Atlantis has said guests of its “safe zone” will not be required to undergo testing multiple times.

“All individuals, including citizens, residents and visitors, travelling into The Bahamas, will be required to complete this short survey on-line each day for approximately 14 days. The health screening survey is an important part of preventing the spread of COVID 19 and ensuring that The Bahamas is safe for all to enjoy,” Dr Minnis said in the House of Assembly yesterday.

“Participation in this survey is mandatory. Those who fail to comply will be subject to penalties. Citizens, residents and visitors who do not complete the survey will be fined $100 per day or one week in prison. For visitors, they will also be deported. The health survey will enable the further monitoring of and response to any possible instances of COVID-19.”

“The Ministry of Health also will be studying the results of the health survey to scientifically test and to evaluate the health protocols.”

Dr Minis said a domestic travel health visa also will be implemented soon for travel from New Providence, Grand Bahama, Abaco, mainland Eleuthera and Bimini to other islands in the country, though this will not apply to travel between Exuma and its cays and Eleuthera and its surrounding islands.

“The domestic travel health visa will replace the 14-day quarantine requirement for those travelling from New Providence,” he said.

“The domestic travel health visa, like the international travel health visa, will include the same two-pronged approach to fight COVID-19, inclusive of the daily health screening survey and rapid antigen testing on the fifth day. This domestic travel health visa must be presented to air and sea carrier operators before boarding an aircraft or marine vessel. If this requirement is breached, the carrier or owner of the vessel is subject to a fine of $2,000 for every passenger travelling without the domestic travel health visa. The passenger also will be subject to a fine of $1,000. I wish also to note that for the time being, a negative COVID-19 RT-PCR test is required only for travel from New Providence, Grand Bahama and Exuma.”

Dr Minnis said despite the restrictive measures he implemented on Exuma because of exponential increases in new COVID-19 cases there, health officials on that island report that “some people are still having gatherings and residents believe this is largely contributing to the spread of COVID-19” there.

“A health team is scheduled to return to Eleuthera next week to complete a follow-up assessment and to determine the impact of the recently imposed restrictive measures on that island,” he said.

He also reiterated his desire that Bahamians not travel abroad at this time because of the possibility that they could return with COVID-19.

Comments

K4C 1 week, 5 days ago

Well this will enhance the Bahamian experience, not to mention the new advertising for visiting the Bahamas, come on down and spend some time in prison or better yet get deported

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tribanon 1 week, 5 days ago

Yep, Minnis is now a pycho tyrant who couldn't care less who or what he destroys. It's well known that too much alcohol over a prolonged period of time destroys the mind. In Minnis's case it's too much power that has totally fried his brain. Things are about to get a whole lot worse for the vast majority of Bahamians if drastic measures are not soon taken to rein in all of his extremely dangerous foolishness.

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C2B 1 week, 5 days ago

You mean "came on Vacation, left on Probation" isn't a slogan? In reality this is a tough situation and I think any visitors that come to The Bahamas do so because they love it and this is a small inconvenience they will overcome.

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TalRussell 1 week, 5 days ago

Before the comrade man's kickstarts sending up dosens to many hundreds colony's tourists and visitors for a stay at the all-inclusive slop bucket Hotel Fox Hill Prison... how about he shares with POAL so as for them to be of more informed understanding as to the why such pressing dire matters were occurring on an out island that justified why he via OPM, had issued emergency inter-out island travel visas but few or more days ago so authorised his House-elected MP, and her traveling caravan in tow, to take to the air aboard a Colonyair flight to touchdown airport of his red party's House-elected MP's Binimi constituency? Shakehead once for upyeahvote, not a made-up story, twice for not?

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Proguing 1 week, 5 days ago

Does that apply to Atlantis guests or are they exempt like the 5th day rapid test?

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trueBahamian 1 week, 5 days ago

What garbage is this? We go from taking a test to.completing a survey. This man has lost his mind. Let's be honest, what tourist is going to fill out a survey each day of their trip? Also, do you really think he is going to deport a tourist our of this country? Every couplenodnwwconds, he change hisnsong because tourists don't care about whatever he has to say.

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professionalbahamian 1 week, 4 days ago

Idiots. No evidence or science this approach will do anything but make travellers go elsewhere and will just confuse the issue.

Protect the elderly and vulnerable with underlying conditions and let the rest of the country get on with their normal lives!

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whogothere 1 week, 4 days ago

These guys addicted to dictating... every morning I now eat popcorn for breakfast... the news and Minnis is a movie... comedy or tragedy? Still deciding...

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shonkai 1 week, 4 days ago

Given the state of government IT this survey website will be more down than up, and anyway, who will be checking and updating when visitor or resident leaves the islands? Oh, yes, of course, we could just give them all an ankle bracelet. One of those that dogs have, where you can give them a buzz when they haven't done their survey yet. Silly thinking again, not everything can be solved by a website or prison threats. Without having a real plan everything comes down to this kind of jerky reactions, going from one bad idea to the next.

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The_Oracle 1 week, 4 days ago

As of today the website travel.gov.bs has no survey?

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bahamian242 1 week, 4 days ago

I am so tired of hearing Fine and or Imprisonment all the time It seems like being in The Bahamas your always doing something wrong.........

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