“Nobody can say whether I’m right or whether I’m wrong, not today”
NASSAU, BAHAMAS – While there is no scientific evidence to support it, Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis said today that COVID-19 curfew remains in place because officials believe it is the most active time for mass gatherings.
Minnis made the comment as he wrapped up his contribution on a resolution to extend the state of emergency and Emergency Powers Regulations to July 31.
“Many people have asked why do we lockdown at 10pm to 5am and have asked for an extension,” he said.
“We believe that during those times there are mass gatherings, parties etc, as the most active times. That’s our view. There’s no scientific evidence at this point in time and nobody would know until five or 10 years from today when they look back and they analyze how The Bahamas managed, how the U.S. managed, how the U.K. managed.
“That’s when the results will come out, because today we are all fluid, we are changing but we are getting results.”
The prime minister noted that such statistics on the most active time in the country is not readily available.
“I tried to obtain such information from the statistics department,” he said.
“They don’t have such information. The police officers, that’s not sufficient. But nobody can answer that question until five to 10 years from today as we review how the various countries managed the COVID-19.”
Minnis noted however that their view is demonstrated by local establishments who continue to cater to large crowds, pointing to Waterloo and other restaurants in the eastern and western New Providence.
“Young people don’t party before 8 o’clock,” he said.
Minnis recounted his own college years when he would go to bed at 8pm and get up at 10 pm to go to the party for midnight.
“I’m certain the young people do that today,” he continued.
“That’s the most active time. That was my most active time.”
The prime minister also pointed to a recent incident where police had to shut down a party with some 150 individuals.
“One infection can cause the meltdown of an entire country, and then you know what they are going to say, ‘Minnis them manage it bad’,” he added.
“…So that’s the reason, but nobody can say whether I’m right or whether I’m wrong, not today. But they can say that 10 years from today.
“Everything is fluid but what he has done is working. So 10pm – 5am is probably working. It’s probably the best and other counties should look at their most active periods and devise their formula around their most active periods.”
Today, Minnis confirmed two additional cases of COVID-19 on Grand Bahama, taking the number of cases in the country to 106.
Health officials are still awaiting the test results of another person on Grand Bahama and contact tracing is ongoing.
The Bahamas reopened its border on July 1 to international flights. However, the government has decided to close all beaches and parks on New Providence, Grand Bahama, and Paradise Island for the Independence Holiday weekend.