Sixty tourists from first flight test negative

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Approximately 60 tourists who came in on the historic first commercial passenger flight to Antigua have been tested and they all tested negative for the coronavirus, says Prime Minister Gaston Browne.

The PM made this announcement yesterday as he urged residents against living in fear.

“Covid is an invisible and formidable foe. However, we must not live in fear, paralysed in terror, and rendered helpless in the face of this enemy,” he said.

On Thursday night, an Antigua born pilot, Brian “Bizzle” Chase, brought about 150 nationals and tourists “home” on an American Airlines flight.

 Most of these nationals had been left stranded by the Covid-19 pandemic and the subsequent border shutdowns.

Even while reporting the good news that almost have of those individuals were free of the virus, the PM reminded the public that “there is no other viable option at this time.”

He said that the “continued closure of our borders would destroy our economy and plunge our people into long-term unemployment and poverty.”

Browne therefore encouraged vigilance and self-discipline in the form of wearing masks as mandated by law, practicing good hygiene etiquette, and social distancing. 

To date, the country has had 26 confirmed cases of the virus, three of which resulted in death.

Presently, there is only one known active case in the country.

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