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Opposition Leader calls for COVID-19 testing labs on VG

- said tourists should not be inconvenienced by having to go to Tortola to get tested
Leader of the Opposition, Hon Marlon A. Penn has called for localized COVID-19 testing labs on the sister islands, which he says would be needed when seaports re-opening. Photo: VINO/File
Hon Marlon A. Penn made the calls in a Monday, April 5, 2021, press release when he noted that the island is a major hub for Tourism and local testing should be facilitated. Photo: Faebook/File
Hon Marlon A. Penn made the calls in a Monday, April 5, 2021, press release when he noted that the island is a major hub for Tourism and local testing should be facilitated. Photo: Faebook/File
VALLEY, Virgin Gorda, VI – Leader of the Opposition Hon Marlon A. Penn (R8) has called for COVID-19 testing labs on the Sister Island of Virgin Gorda. He said the labs would be needed when the seaports reopen to international operations.

“When we open the seaports, we will surely see an influx of visitors to Virgin Gorda and we do not want to inconvenience tourists to come to Tortola for testing,” the Opposition Leader stated.

The Virgin Islands' seaports are slated to reopen for international travel on April 15, 2021, more than a year after they were closed due to the global coronavirus pandemic.

In a press release on Monday, April 5, 2021, Hon Fahie noted that Virgin Gorda is a major hub for tourism and local testing should be facilitated.

He said throughout the pandemic Opposition members continue to offer suggestions, both privately and publicly, to the Fahie administration to help navigate the Territory through the COVID-19 crisis on behalf of the people of the Virgin Islands.

Frontline workers saluted 

He also thanked frontline workers for the work done so far. “We appreciate those persons, for their selflessness and all they do to safeguard our families, visitors, community and the health of the wider Territory,” Hon Penn expressed.

Concerning the current testing services at the Dr D. Orlando Smith Hospital, Hon Penn called for systems to be strengthened which would result in quicker turnarounds so that persons can receive their COVID test results promptly.

“We need to avoid having persons out in public not properly knowing their status, thus resulting in widespread panic,” he said.

12 Responses to “Opposition Leader calls for COVID-19 testing labs on VG”

  • trrefdrfds (06/04/2021, 10:48) Like (7) Dislike (0) Reply
    Majority of Tourist are now going to VG.
  • Guest (06/04/2021, 11:21) Like (5) Dislike (2) Reply
    I smell another lead NDP hand behind this...
    • Dont need a lab. (06/04/2021, 12:47) Like (5) Dislike (0) Reply
      Testing can be done on all outer island without a lab...
  • Makes sense to me (06/04/2021, 11:40) Like (6) Dislike (1) Reply
    VG should have their own testing site and lab.
  • lol (06/04/2021, 11:59) Like (3) Dislike (0) Reply
    What is the BVI Tourist Board doing???? Someone really had to spell this out? Why is it not already being done? Even if the samples have to be transported to Tortola for lab testing they should at minimum have a setup where the samples are collected. wow.
  • omg (06/04/2021, 14:01) Like (5) Dislike (3) Reply
    So marlon stayed from all the way east end and see this so which means that the one who lives among us got to be blind....We need back the eye doctor fast
  • Complainer (06/04/2021, 19:59) Like (3) Dislike (0) Reply
    How much will that cost , Marlon? Who going and pay for it? The government? Taxpayers? Where the money will come from? If we don't have to pay for it then it is the Tourist that will have to pay and then you will complain if the cost for tourist rise.
    • @ complainer. Do the Maths (07/04/2021, 05:13) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
      Add up all the unnecessary consultation fees, U have your answer, thats more than enough to cover the cost
  • Citizen (07/04/2021, 06:59) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
    He must donate a part of his salary to help with what he calls for.
  • Dancing in the sunshine (07/04/2021, 07:03) Like (2) Dislike (1) Reply
    I don't want to use the appropriate word to describe the Opposition Leader in this article because it would not sound good. He is building a castle in the air. I am tired of his pettiness. I have done my COVID-19 test on Virgin Gorda and the result returned negative. For many years the Nurse Iris O'Neal Clinic has been doing an excellent job with food handlers and other specimen from patients and they were sent to Peebles Hospital for analysis without any problem. Did the clinic express any concern for the testing? I want to urge the Hon. Premier and members of his government to focus on the work that they are doing and don't be distracted by Hon. Penn. If General Election is to be held anytime soon I will vote to re-elect the V.I.P to office.
  • tom (07/04/2021, 22:12) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    a) this should have been done along ago ... not sure what is the big deal.
    b) "When we open the seaports, we will surely see an influx of visitors to Virgin Gorda and we do not want to inconvenience tourists to come to Tortola for testing,” - what influx are we talking about? the extra 50 people a day?

    this is a joke that the USVI people are laughing so hard ....
  • Captain Jack (17/04/2021, 10:38) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    To all the lovely people of the great islands of the BVI, I am from the US and completely understand your fear of the unknown. I have family that would not take the VACCINE because of all the propaganda. Fake news yes! to scare us so we read their trash! I told my sister to stay in the shadows but I will move on , we will move on ! You have to balance health and feed your family's . I have come to your wonderful country with my crew and customer's for many years . I have had lots of laughing and enjoyed your smiles and love. But the time is now to act not later, folks from all over the world customer's have invested on charter boats who have credits waiting to spend money from the pre pandemic period . Their trips were canceled because of this PANDEMIC crisis. Unfortunately the owners of such yachts are leaving or have gone , I heard as many as 50 percent move their boats to other locations and may never return. Those credits the customers have will take their business elsewhere with other Moorings locations available to them . It is simple , the Government needs to change course ! Test results are slowing making it difficult to justify cruising because of quarantine on Day four. Making things worse, when ferry traffic comes do the math testing will bog down even more putting the brakes on any booking of hotels boating business . What that means is, the Moorings charters or any other will be delayed making trips, it will be a waste of time and money ! For one simple reason the 4th day test . For example your just sitting in the water quarantined doing NOTHING, not spending a dime in restaurant s buying goods ect. What they will remember after they leave is the desperate taxi drivers hustling them on their fees. Will they return ? maybe but maybe not! This has been very difficult for all people . The solution is simple, get vaccinated! move on, come out of the dark! Second the government needs to also come out as well with out fear, to show everyone life needs to move on. Testing is a must and the portal system is smart ! What must change is who comes through the portal to the BVI! That should Only be fully vaccinated PEOPLE period . The day Four test protocols are killing your economy IT MUST END it's redundant with that simple change!
    To the government of the BVI, your asking your citizens to trust the VACCINE then you need to do the same!

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