MPs approve extension of Covid-19 emergency order
A 60-day extension of public health emergency regulations was passed in the House of Assembly on Friday.
Jason Hayward, the Minister of Labour, read the Public Health (Covid-19) Emergency Extension (No 6) Order 2021 in the absence of Kim Wilson, the Minister of Health on Friday night.
Mr Hayward said: “Members will be aware that the current health emergency order is scheduled to lapse on November 29, 2021.
“We live on a very small island and as you know from previous outbreaks the coronavirus that causes the disease Covid-19 spreads quickly and negatively impacts the whole community.
“As stated, success in dealing with Covid-19 requires a community effort. In this pandemic, individual decisions can and do have island-wide consequences.”
Scott Pearman, the Shadow Minister of Legal Affairs, asked what criteria were used to decide to extend emergency powers and under what circumstances the Government would deem it unnecessary to impose further emergency measures.
Mr Hayward said Dr Ayoola Oyinloye, the Chief Medical Officer, and the health minister agreed that variants remain a concern.
“They believe Covid-19 and the variants are a big threat,” he said. The Delta variant caused the biggest spike in Covid-19 cases and deaths that Bermuda has experienced. That spike took place between late August and is only now receding.
Mr Hayward said while it was the government’s hope that further extensions would not be imposed, the decision rested with the Minister of Health and Chief Medical Officer.