Tuesday, September 26, 2023

Government Seeks to Extend Emergency Order One Final Time to Nov 13

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Prime Minister Hubert Minnis tabled the new proposed extension of the Emergency Order for one final time to November 13.

The House of Assembly met for approximately half-hour to give notice of the new proposal.

Paliamentarians will meet again tomorrow to debate the resolution.

Speaking in a national address lastnight, Minnis promised it would be the last extension of the orders.

The Prime Minister said it was the intention of the government, that depending on the state of the pandemic, a move would be made toward ending the use of the Emergency Orders this month and to transition to a new legislative framework as more Bahamians were vaccinated.

Minnis said the surge in new cases, hospitalizations and deaths have caused the government to temporarily adjust plans to immediately save Bahamian lives and to protect the economy.

“My government has set a plan to further combat this wave and to transition the country to a new post-Emergency Orders regime after this deadly surge subsides,” said the Prime Minister.

“As a result of the arrival soon of new vaccine supplies, we will be able to begin the transition process away from the Emergency Orders.”

Minnis said this is only a draft of the bill and will be tabled for widespread public consultation.

“We seek the advice of the Official Opposition. We would like the input of the religious community, businesses, NGOs, labor unions, other organizations and individuals so we can make the legislation more representative before final passage and enactment.”

To help control and slow the spread of COVID-19, Minnis also announced new curfew hours for New Providence and Grand Bahama, from 9pm to 5am; and on mainland Exuma and mainland Abaco, from 10pm to 5am.

The big story

The Bahamas has been under the State of Emergency since March 2020. Since then, the government has extended the order as COVID-19 cases rose in the country.

Photo credit: The Nassau Guardian

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