“A word to the wise is sufficient,” said Prime Minister Gaston Browne on his Facebook page yesterday as he strongly cautioned residents of Antigua and Barbuda to adhere to the recently-implemented social distancing and gatherings guidelines.
The prime minister and his Cabinet have noted publicly that there has been a blatant “disregard” for the new guidelines which, as of last Sunday, prohibit social gatherings of more than 25 persons.
“Little or no attention is being paid to the announced.. and the policy is being violated, despite the severity of the threat of community spread of the coronavirus,” state notes from the Cabinet.
Yesterday, the government of Grenada imposed a mandatory curfew restricting the movement of its people between the hours of 7pm to 5am daily as it seeks to mitigate against the impending threat of COVID-19.
Curfews are also in place in the Cayman Islands, British Virgin Islands and Turks and Caicos.
Prime Minister Browne may choose to take similar actions in Antigua and Barbuda.
“If we fail to be responsible, then the Cabinet will be forced to take similar drastic action, which will result in a curtailment of personal freedoms and further socio-economic hardship,” he said via his Facebook account.
The PM reiterated the need for personal responsibility and adherence to the health protocols to include social distancing by limiting social gatherings. He urged the public to engage in good hygiene practices, and for those with COVID-19-type symptoms to self-quarantine.
He also urged, “self-hibernation of the vulnerable – senior citizens and those with underlying health conditions, a healthy diet, exercise, adequate rest and empathy for each other, to contain community spread.”