Doomed by indecisiveness

Letters to the Editor

Doomed by indecisiveness

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

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Dear Editor,

As at April 17, 2020 there were 143 confirmed cases of the 2019 novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Jamaica. Of that number there had been five deaths and 21 recoveries. If my maths is correct, that means there were 117 active cases.

I doubt the island does not yet have as much as 50 working ventilators at its disposal.

When the crisis first broke out, I lifted my hat off to Messrs Christopher Tufton and Andrew Holness. I thought that they were moving in the right direction. A few weeks later, I'm flabbergasted and forced to reconsider my stance.

Some people will agree that the border closures needed to have been followed by a 24-hour curfew for at least two weeks. Had we done that, we likely would not be in our current predicament. Some of our neighbours — Montserrat, Barbados, Antigua & Barbuda, and Grenada — all imposed 24-hour curfews shortly after closing their borders. Rest assured that these countries' number of positive COVID-19 cases are all under 80. Their curfews are still in effect, as they are determined to eradicate this virus from their populations. The difference between their leaders and ours is their decisiveness and determination to get desired results. They were not afraid of making the unpopular choice and doing what was necessary to safeguard the health of their citizens.

Prime Minister Andrew Holness and his Cabinet are essentially content with playing Russian roulette, and that cannot be the order of the day. It is time they stop delaying the inevitable and impose the 24-hour curfew. COVID-19 isn't playing politics, and neither should the Government. Restriction of movement is a necessity in this fight to eradicate the virus.

It is admirable that the prime minister has faith in the citizens of this country, but he ought to have seen by now that not all Jamaicans are acting 'sober'. Dead people cannot revive an economy, and neither can the deathly ill. Until Prime Minister Holness decides to get out of the middle of the road, and make a decision in the best interest of Jamaica we're doomed.

The Jamaica Constabulary Force is stretched and overworked. They need help and it is time to call out the Jamaica Defence Force and their many strategists to help get us back on track. With the proper regulatory framework the all-island, 24-hour curfew will help to curtail the community spread.

Sheree-Ann L Bartley

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