Fri 24th Oct 2014
SVG Green Party is very pleased that SVG and other OECS countries have accepted SVG Green Party‘s advice, given to the ULP regime in Green Party press releases in August and September 2014, to impose a complete ban on all people from Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) affected countries in Africa.
The SVG Green Party policy became regional policy in the OECS on 14 October 2014.
SVG Green Party is very concerned that the deadly EVD could be brought into SVG, by persons who have passed through countries with EVD or are from countries with EVD. There is no specific treatment for EVD and the disease has high a mortality rate, killing 50% to 90% of those infected by the virus.
In September 2014, the World Health Organisation had said that 3,091 people had died of EVD and a total of 6,574 cases had been reported. It has now been reported that about 4,500 people, mostly in west Africa, have died from EVD since the epidemic began this year.
With regards to EVD, the ULP regime has been very slow to react. SVG Green Party gave the ULP regime advice about EVD on 6th August 2014 and again on 30th September 2014. The failure by the ULP regime to act immediately has put Vincentian lives at greater risk. This kind of dotishness in matters of national safety, highlights the incompetence of the ULP regime.
SVG Green Party Leader, Mr Ivan O’Neal, personally handed the health minister a Green Party press release with advice. For the ULP regime to wait over 2 months before imposing a ban on persons from EVD-affected countries is reckless.
The ULP regime’s earlier response about EVD was to announce a quarantine system. However, this quarantine idea was nothing short of pure nonsense. You don’t just sit back and wait until EVD is in our country and then try to contain it, you have to stop it from getting in to SVG in the first place.
A system should be set up so that airlines that fly to SVG screen their passengers before boarding. Passengers that have passed through African countries with EVD in the 3 months prior to scheduled arrival in SVG (as the incubation period before symptoms show is up to 3 weeks), or are from African countries with EVD, must not be allowed to board flights to SVG.
This should take in to account flights from abroad that fly directly in to Mustique, Bequia and all the other Grenadines islands too. Vincentians’ health should not be put at risk of EVD, just because the owners of the medical college and the super-rich of Mustique and Canouan want to make a few dollars.
The people of SVG are experiencing the worst period of economic and financial hardship for decades under the incompetent ULP regime. An outbreak of the deadly EVD in our country would have a devastating and long-term impact, making this period of economic hardship even more damaging.
The United Nations has told the world to get tough on EVD. Strong and decisive leadership is needed in SVG to make sure that our country does not succumb to EVD, but all the ULP regime has shown on this danger of an EVD outbreak is weakness and dilly-dallying. How safe are we in the ULP regime’s incompetent hands?
The incompetent Gonsalves should resign and go home. He has been a failure in the management of the affairs of SVG.