NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Super Value’s president Rupert Robert said yesterday he was ‘shocked’ that food stores had been given so little notice ahead of Friday’s complete shutdown announcement by Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis, while suggesting that the shopping schedule order was a bit too soon.
“I was shocked that they gave us such little time to close down because I knew for two days Barbados was going to close down Friday afternoon at 5 pm,” Roberts said.
“For some reason, which I assume was a medical reason they only gave us three hours notice. We really didn’t even have three hours notice.”
He added: “Word must have gotten out because the customers started to swarm us at 5pm. Then the police showed up and started telling people to get off the line and go home. It was short notice. Some people hadn’t been paid yet. Some people didn’t have water in the house.”
On Friday, Dr Minnis had announced a complete shutdown of all business in The Bahamas beginning starting at 8pm until 5 am this morning, in an effort to curb the “surge” of COVID-19 cases gripping the nation.
The only personnel not affected included: hospitals, hotels with guests, the police force, defense force, OPBAT, security firms, and essential workers for the functioning of utilities.
The government’s food shopping schedule will be in effect today.
It was noted that special provisions have been made for individuals 60 years of age and older and persons with disabilities.
Senior citizens and persons with disabilities may shop on Tuesdays from 6am to 12pm; however, persons in these categories may also choose to shop on the day assigned to their last name.
Roberts said: This shouldn’t have started Monday, it’s started too soon. Some people who couldn’t shop on Friday have to wait until Tuesday. We have to support the law but if things aren’t concrete they should reconsider and tweak it. They should have let people shop until Wednesday and start this on Thursday perhaps.”