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Grand Bahama residents looking forward to jab

By DENISE MAYCOCK

Tribune Freeport Reporter

dmaycock@tribunemedia.net

WITH the COVID-19 vaccination campaign expected to begin in Grand Bahama on Monday, many residents appear ready to take the shot when it becomes available.

The Tribune spoke with several Grand Bahama residents yesterday while at Port Lucaya Marketplace to get their views on the issue.

Freeport attorney Kirk Antoni said he will definitely get vaccinated as soon as he can.

“I will be first in line,” said Mr Antoni. “I am a doctor’s son and I looked at the science and I talked to the doctors and they say it is safe to take it; I will be the first in line as soon as it is available.”

He also said: “I have no fear in taking the vaccine because the more of us that take the vaccine the more herd immunity will start.”

Herd immunity or community immunity is when a large part of the population of an area is immune to a specific disease.

Mr Antoni also noted that people wishing to travel will likely need to be vaccinated.

“I think you are going to have to have a vaccine passport to be able to travel anymore, and when you think about it right now the cost of taking all these PCR tests, travelling to Nassau and the (United) States, will be reduced once we have the vaccine.”

Although Nyia Walkine has some trepidation about the vaccine, she said that she will probably get vaccinated.

“I have mixed feelings about it,” she said, noting the speed in which the vaccines were developed was an area of concern for her.

Still Ms Walkine, an entrepreneur and mother of two, said with airlines and the hotel industry likely to mandate vaccines for travel, she will probably take it.

“(If) you have to get the vaccine to travel, that is automatic, so I probably would get it. My daughter goes to school abroad, and so that might be a requirement for her going back to the classroom and so she won’t have a choice.”

Marketing specialist Valdez Russell is thinking of taking the vaccine as well.

“As we emerge through COVID-19 it is important for us to have access to modern elements that is going to help us to all be better,” he said.

Mr Russell said that choice and flexibility are important, along with planning and preparation.

“As I think about taking the vaccine, it is my hope to do that here in The Bahamas. It is also my hope that we have access to all of the best choices so I can make an informed and educated decision around my health,” he said.

Pastor Kenneth Fowler, of Eagles Nest Disciple Centre, said there is so much information circulating around about the various vaccines on the market.

“There is just so much information being given, and there are those who think we should not get it, and those who think we should,” he said.

Pastor Fowler said vaccinations have been around for years.

“We have been all right with it, and I believe there are some who might be affected by it. I will not tell my congregation to go ahead and get it, I will tell them to pray about it.

“As for myself personally, I am leaning more to being vaccinated. I heard all the negative talk around it. I am close to 70 so I had vaccinations before, and I am still here. And there might be those who have complications…and so there could be some adverse affects.

“I have no problem personally taking the vaccine when it is my turn. I am happy that the competent authority is giving those in the frontline first, and I think all things should be done by prayer. So, I would not tell someone to do it.”

Businessman Brian Seymour believes that the benefits outweigh the risks.

“Well, I know there is a lot of apprehension with this vaccine, but the benefits outweigh the risks.

“. . .So, the AstraZeneca vaccine once it becomes available, I will be more than happy to take it so we could get back to some normalcy working without taking all sorts of risks.

“Whether we like it or not, travel in the future you are not going to be able to go to much places without having it. So, it comes down to which vaccine you want. But you will have to take it because countries will not allow you in their jurisdiction unless you have it, and you are not going to be able to go on cruises,” Mr Seymour predicted.

“I hear all the conspiracy theories and stuff like that, but vaccines are the reality right now, and they have gotten better. The two-dose AstraZeneca vaccine that will be available to Bahamians, when it comes I will be taking it,” Mr Seymour said.

The government received 20,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine last week and began vaccinations this week.

Comments

JokeyJack 3 years, 2 months ago

Freeport people are like Charlie Brown and the government is like Lucy pulling the ball away. They keep switching FNM and PLP thinking they will get change. DNA did not win one seat in GB last time and independents probably wont win one seat this time. 5 years from now they will be crying again saying another 5 years and nothing done. After so many 5 years pass by, it's time for the grave.

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ThisIsOurs 3 years, 2 months ago

I agree. this "jab" terminology is very annoying. can't he come up with an original phrase for once? In trumps heyday he adopted "bold", every dumb move was "bold"

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