Categorized | National News

Schools Closed Until April 14

With concerns over public health and the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19), Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis announced that schools will be closed from March 16 until April 14. 

The prime minister announced the closure of schools yesterday during his televised national address on the deadly disease.

According to Dr. Minnis, the minister of education will give a communication in the House of Assembly on Wednesday concerning the closure of schools.

The first case of the coronavirus was confirmed in The Bahamas on Sunday after a 61-year-old woman tested positive for the disease.   

The prime minister also announced that out of an abundance of caution, all national sporting events will be postponed until further notice.

“There is an indefinite suspension of all permits for use of public open spaces,” Dr. Minnis said.

“Fellow Bahamians and residents, we are still recovering from the impact of Hurricane Dorian.

“This coronavirus crisis represents yet another risk to our economy and the country’s finances and fiscal sustainability plans. 

“This crisis will have a growing adverse impact on confidence, travel, and supply chains across the globe.  

“This will affect Bahamian workers and businesses and will have an impact on the poorer and more vulnerable in our country.”

However, the prime minister noted that he will be meeting and consulting with major business entities to get their input on The Bahamas’ national response to COVID-19.

He added that no sector is more at risk than travel.

“This crisis will have a tremendous and widespread economic impact,” Dr. Minnis explained.

“Tourism accounts for an estimated 50 percent of our gross domestic product, just under 50 percent of direct employment, and has a cascading impact across the broader economy.   

“Another important fact is that over 80 percent of our stopover visitors are from the United States, which is reporting increasing cases of the virus and 75 percent of our visitors come by cruise ships, which are suspending cruises. 

“All of these developments signal to us the huge exposure our economy faces from the spread of the virus, which has already began to show up.”

Written by Jones Bahamas

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